Data scientists replacing community managers?

I was watching an end-of-year social media trend video today, and one line stood out for me amidst the usual information.

The job of “community manager” – someone who looks after a social media community and steers the conversation, keeps the tone on track, and encourages civility in general is apparently on the decline.

In its stead will emerge the data scientists, who will analyse what is being said en masse and provide better value to the business.

Part of this feels true / inevitable, as a community manager’s role will involve more data analysis and reporting. The other aspect, though, is a step away from social. Untended communities will tend to become places where topics of discussion wander: it’s not enough to treat an online community as a source of data – someone needs to be there looking after it as a place where humans are trying to have conversations.

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