Whatever you are doing for the next 15 minutes, will probably not be as useful as watching this video of Steve Jobs' 2005 commencement speech at Stanford University.
Jobs talks on how he set life priorities from three difficult experiences: his early life as an adopted child, being fired from Apple in 1985, and his life and death encounter with pancreatic cancer. It is a serious, timeless piece of wisdom from an iconic American hero...great content!
But as I watched the video I saw something unsettling. The Stanford students were barely listening to Jobs. At the start many were talking in the background. Into the speech, audience laughter came at times as if the students were watching a TV sitcom rather than serious lessons of life and death.
But with social media, great content can endure beyond initial audience indifference. This video is alive and well on YouTube, where it has been seen by millions (3.6 million on one of many posts), on iTunes, blogs, and websites.
Since 2005 Jobs went on to become Amerca's most respected CEO. As he departs for yet another leave from Apple for unspecified health issues, the message of this address seems more urgent than ever. No one is laughing or talking in the background now.