I got a little choked up over morning coffee as I watched Google's newest Chrome commercial, starring Lady Gaga.
This may seem like yet another promotion for her new album, but what strikes me about this ad is not Gaga's message, but Google's. They're not marginalizing an incredibly diverse fan base or too-markedly stereotyping them. Instead, they're spreading a positive, empowering message that they help you be you -- wherever you fit on the you spectrum (Lady Gaga on one end to the YouTube coverer to the ordinary Google searcher).
They're saying that yes, this stuff is personal. While the medium of web or mobile device may have professional or technical motivations, the technology we use today has started to turn a corner: It's connecting people with people and the things they love.
This isn't a new theme, since even Time magazine named the proverbial You the Person of the Year five years ago, but it's really sinking in through our behaviors and the acceptance of marketers. My column itself, on a women's site, is an admission of this fact. Without having to be a part of the industry or know how things work (aka Being a Geek), we've started to show signs of becoming a post-geek society.
If you're wondering, yes, this is me swooning.
The symbolism of change in a web-browser commercial, of all things, gets me weepy because it brings me incredible hope. As a female coder who attends meetups where I'm regularly one of the few if not the only woman in the room, I'm ready for a generation of people who scoff at the notion of belonging. Young girls, who are already tweeting, using Facebook, and texting, have a baseline familiarity with tech that most readers of even this site never had. Giving a face to the youth technology movement, Google has hit it out of the park, and Lady Gaga ain't no dummy in recognizing where the power of online marketing, discovery (hello, SEO!) and innovation comes from.
High five, Gaga and Google.