In fact, social media provides such immediacy that the water cooler conversations have gone away and are taking place at the virtual "lounge" (aka Twitter, Facebook, other preferred social media platform).
In a recent Jack Myers blog I elaborate on this further, but it definitely has spurred some controversy among my networks.
When I posted the water cooler idea on my personal social media "stations" there were, of course, some contrarians. One said "You're still thirsty after using social media." (funny) But another was even more specific, saying, "I think the whole social media thing is over blown. There was no social media during Tiananmen Square. The Soviet Union fell without Twitter and Facebook. When freedom rings, the masses answer."
The world saw all that on TV not in the square or at the Wall. And everyone talked about it the next day. Not much changed in China, and the Wall didn't come down because of an outpouring of global social action through moral outrage and word of mouth...it came down because it was time, and Ronald Reagan said so!
Social media is now our most effective "word of mouth tool."
So let me ask you - do you agree with this water cooler analogy?