Zane State College
TwitBook Takeover Our social way of life has completely flipped upside down within the past few decades. People are literally addicted to updating their status, or checking up on what their favorite celebrity was doing an hour ago. Social media sites, such as Twitter and Facebook, tend to be taking over many people’s lives around the world. In fact, a few days before LeBron James talked about his free agency destination, he started his own twitter (Tagtmeier, 2010). “He drew 150,000 followers in 7 hours” (Tagtmeier, 2010, para 2). This outstanding number indicates just how popular these social media sites have become. However, if you’re not a very tech-savvy person, you may not know a lot about these extraordinary sites or which one is better for you and your social needs. First off, you must understand what Twitter and Facebook are, what features they include, and how much privacy each site has.
“Social networking” may be a term you might not even fully understand. You might know what social and network mean as two separate terms, but when put together, what do they create? We all know a network is where you can share your ideas or interests with a group of people. “Isn't all networking by definition "social"? And yet, in order to give a label to the exciting world of Facebook or Twitter, we call it "social" networking -- as though there's a difference, as though you have to try harder to understand what it all means ” (Cuyler, 2011, para 3). When in reality, these sites are simply for communication and entertainment purposes.
Although Twitter and Facebook are both classified as social networking sites, they have major differences. Facebook has many functions and activities available compared to Twitter. You can upload pictures or videos, join groups, or even add your own event to your friend’s calendars. Twitter on the other hand, gives you a limit of 140 characters to say what you want while including links every now and then. Twitter seems to have been created for blogging, while Facebook seems to be that and more.
Looking deeper into Twitter and Facebook, you may notice the people you interact with have different names. For example, on Facebook you have “friends”, to where on Twitter you have “followers”. Facebook keeps you connected with family, friends or acquaintances that you have had personal contact with before. This contrasts with your “followers” from Twitter. This is because your followers may be people you know, but usually are people who want to get to know you. They may also have a common interest with you, which they noticed by your tweets. “Twitter has been likened to a giant party where you know no one but wish to make many friends. In contrast, Facebook would be a wedding reception filled with family and friends” (Tagtmeier, 2010, para 9). Either way, you meet many new people through mutual friends or common hobbies.
On a more personal level, you might notice how Facebook keeps you updated on your “friends” important news. Things such as birthdays, relationship statuses, and upcoming gatherings are all right on your news feed. You will never miss an update with the “Ticker” in the top left-hand corner. This feature is a big favorite on Facebook; however, it is not available on Twitter. Instead, individuals usually tweet about their birthday on their special day.
Now you may become worried about the privacy issue due to strangers checking out your profile. Luckily, both networks do have ways to protect your information, but they are not affective until you make them. When you first create a Facebook or Twitter account, everything you post or share is public. People can easily access your information simply by typing your name into Google. When you make your profile private on Facebook, strangers can only see what you allow them too. This is closely related to how Twitter’s privacy is constructed. When someone’s Twitter profile is