I walked to the parking garage in the darkness, my heart was racing almost as quickly as my mind. I was afraid, anxious and agitated. My stomach had that deep ache that told me what I was about to undertake something that was not in my nature, yet it was something I had to do. Signing on for the social media research class, I was being sent deep behind enemy lines.
The objective was clear – infiltrate the enemy, learn their language and methods, assess their tools and the value of their tactics, and bring home the information for those outside of the social media culture to benefit from. That said, a clear mission does not necessarily make for an easy one.
“Hiding” in plain sight, I listened to them speaking through the first class; the words were cryptic yet sounded strangely familiar. I struggled to connect the pieces of information that I was able to make sense of. Clearly their language would require more than just a casual field book to interpret.
In spite of the language barrier, they appeared amazingly friendly, collaborative, and willing to share their “secrets”; I will need to remain diligent, I suspect this approach is part of their recruitment strategy…