Social networking sites are a new revolution that deserves our attention, as we ourselves are part of this revolution. Social networking is an umbrella term that refers to the various activities that integrate technology, social interaction, and construction of words, pictures, audio and videos. Simply put, social networking is about the millions of conversations that take place all over the world on social networking sites, which includes Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, online forums, etc. Proponents of online communities insist that they facilitate
Shawn Ball TVCC Student
BA 131/ Two page paper
communication and connection globally, serves as a new business arena, and brings together people of common interests and allows them to air their views with no restrictions. 1”Opponents of social networking sites however, argue that social networking sites make children vulnerable to online predators and identity thief, lowers worker productivity, and leads to huge time wastage.” Personally, I believe that social networking sites do have their role and purpose in society, as long as they are utilized properly. ………………………………………………
1 Martin Baily, PhD, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, stated the following in a Feb. 15, 2008 entry titled "Is MySpace Good for Society? A Freakonomics Quorum," from the "Freakonomics" blog hosted by the New York Times http://socialnetworking.procon.org/view.answers.php?questionID=001614
According to Nielsen, a global marketing and advertising research company, social media is now the number one online activity, beating email and porn to the top spot. Two-thirds of the internet population visits social networking sites. Social networking sites allow people to create new relationships and reconnect with friends and relatives. Increased communication of any kind, even online, helps to strengthen relationships. According to a survey in America, internet users have larger social networks than non-users, and using social networking sites to maintain those relationships facilitates more face-to-face interaction. Internet users are augmenting their offline social networks, not replacing them. Thus, social networking sites are a boon to societal relationships.
Social networking sites also represent a new business arena. The Internet, credited to be one of America’s 7 modern wonders of today, has become one of the most influential sources in helping consumers make purchasing decisions, as claimed by Weber Shandwick Online Research. As two-thirds of the internet population visits social networking sites, a new business advertising arena in social networking sites has been found. Millions of entrepreneurs are creating content and advertising for the social web. As Business Week puts it, ‘Your competitors are already there. Your customers have been there for a long time. If your business isn’t putting itself out there, it should be.’ One way marketing has had its day. It’s time to stop campaigns, and start conversations. Thus, social networking sites represent an untapped gold mine.
Social networking sites allow for creative expression in a new medium. They provide free messaging, blogging, photo storage, games, event invitations and other services to anyone with an access to the internet and a computer. They bring together people with common interests, offer exposure to new ideas from around the world, and lower inhibitions to overcome social anxiety. People who have difficulty in communicating in person are more comfortable with communicating via the internet. In addition, social networking sites are expanding from general interests to more specific uses that benefits society. For example, sites have been created for medical purposes relating to life altering diseases, drug addiction, alcoholism, and weight loss. Social networking sites with a specific focus helps to introduce people to others who are dealing with the same issues, and provides