What is a weavr?

Yesterday I got retweeted by a weavr.

(I’m actually quite amused by this sentence.  Four years or so ago that would have been nonsense.)

‘My’ weavr, SpectatorLDN, seems human at first, but a bit weird. She’s ‘anxious’ and blogs about things she ‘sees’ in London. But weavrs aren’t human, they’re robots with ‘human personalities’.

Weavrs explore the web and document what they find. As they interact, they become more and more like real personas, becoming difficult to distinguish from a human.  Using the vast amount of public data available, they blog about ‘themselves’: how they feel, where they go and what they experience, sharing ‘slippy’ content from around social media.

According to Canvas8, by 2015, 10% of our online ‘friends’ will be non-human.  We will follow entities like weavrs because they will offer us a targeted, personal seeming stream of relevant information.  They will provide us with useful stuff, without going on about their pets or their kids or what they’re having for lunch.

The implications for online marketing are quite large.  Remember Ananova?  This is the real deal.  If people like dealing with online robots like weavrs because they become useful informers – and even regular companions, they they will be an enormous success.

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