Some new services allow people to turn their social media into real world items.

In an increasingly digitized world, with many objects now replaced by digital/virtual counterparts, tangible items are taking on a new allure. This fetishization of the physical and the tactile is one of our 10 Trends for 2012; we termed it Objectifying Objects. A range of new services now allows people to get to grips—literally—with their social media output, turning it into real-world items.

MOO Inc. offers business cards created from Facebook users’ Timeline images and data, using the same fonts and layout; it includes the person’s Facebook URL. As a default, the back of the card features a quote from the customer’s Favourite Quotations field. Apparently intended for the most prolific tweeters, the Twitter Poster re-creates the customer’s profile picture using his or her own tweets (in itself an interesting interpretation of the modern-day portrait). And Instagram users can decorate their homes with their creations using Stitchtagram, a service that crafts handmade pillows using fabric printed with Instagram shots.

The more people embrace the digital format, the more they also miss what it can’t provide: something to have and to hold, to display or frame. Expect more novel services that transform our virtual information into real-world stuff.

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