“You’ve got mail.”

Twenty years ago, this simple message from AOL seemed about as high-tech as a person could get. But then the bar raised with an exciting new social network called Facebook. Then it raised again with the arrival of the iPhone, a cellphone that doubled as a mini computer you could keep with you at all times.

Now we’re at the point where we can instantly connect with people from all over the world and not give it another thought:

·       We read blogs daily for news, updates and advice.
·       We react to pictures, memories and stories on Facebook.
·       We know what our friends had for lunch thanks to Instagram.
·       We laugh together on Tumblr.
·       We might even land a job interview because of LinkedIn.

Of course, there’s also Twitter, Vine, YouTube, Snapchat, Pinterest, TikTok and so many other ways to get to know people online.

Offline, though, it’s a different story. If you poke someone offline, you’re likely to get (at best) some really weird looks. To block someone IRL, you have to literally walk away or plug in some heavy-duty earphones.

Friend requests have to be made in a more subtle way.

And—perhaps most significant of all—there’s no obvious lead-in to an introduction or a conversation. This means we miss out on potentially amazing connections every day simply because we don’t realize that that connection has just walked right past us.

The person sitting across from you waiting for the same flight could be perfect to interview for your work or school project. The lady checking her email in the coffee shop might be the next lead singer of your band. The dad at school pick-up might just sell you your next house. The people who could enter your life on a small or large scale are all around you; you just need an opening to find those connections.

ME+iD was founded on the idea of creating that opening for you, and it does it with something as simple as an article of clothing.

By showcasing your passion on a beautifully designed tee, you are automatically introducing a key part of your life to those around you, which in turn encourages them to reciprocate. You might explore or discuss your favorite hobby, finding others who want to learn more or who have their own take already.

If you offer a service (such as web designing, editing, babysitting or dog walking, to name a few), you might make your tee into a wearable business card, advertising your services to all you come in contact with in a non-intrusive, friendly way.

If you don’t want to encourage close-up conversation in this time of social distancing, you could still connect with those around you by sharing a humorous or uplifting message. (And don’t forget, you still have the chance to start conversations with your tee through virtual meetings! Zoom, anyone?)

Just as Mark Zuckerburg started Facebook at Harvard to connect students, we have started a movement to connect people in real life—quarantine or no. So join us. Wear your passion. Make a connection.

We want to know: What’s your thing?

 

 

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