The impact of social media on society.Posted: 22/04/2012
Social networking has become a main part of our lives because people involved in it can obtain different kind of answers for many needs and restlessness, and they can analyze some problems that can be found in real life. It is an open system, permanently developed, that involves groups of people with common interests and allows them to organize themselves in order to satisfy their concerns.
Social networks on the internet appeared approximately between 2001 and 2002, beginning with social circles to meet friends. After that, this kind of networks became very popular for contacting new people with common interests to the users. The main advantage of these sites is that when someone logs in, the network begins to grow because many people will do it too in order to follow the first user.
The more people the network has, the more information is shared in an easier way. Considering this last part, we could assure that with the use of social media many commercial communities have been built, where a product or service is exposed to the people and in this way the product could be employed when it will be required. At this moment, in many countries, social media is a way to organize people with common interests. In many countries, social media have been very useful to display advertisements about local business, political candidacies, worldwide news, personal interest information, entertainment news etc.
For example, in 2008, Obama made 5 millions “friends” on approximately 15 social networking sites (3 million friends on facebook) and posted 2,000 you tube videos watched around 80 million times. MyBarackObama had 8.5 million of visitors and made 400,000 blogs. To obtain more popularity Obama spent $3.5 million on google search, $467,000 on facebook , $600,000 on Advertising.com and actually Obama has around 14,285,000 followers on Twitter. This substantially could contribute to win his election as a president.
In Mexican practice, social media has even been used to warn people about events of low self-safety. For example, in Monterrey city, people on the streets send many alerts by twitter or facebook about local disturbs such as shootings, robberies, drug dealer attacks, etc.
In recent times, social networks have been absolutely relevant for first hand information for example in the case of earthquakes around the world and mainly in Mexico were everyone announces what is happening in real time. The “Servicio Sismológico de México” emits reports in real time of the earthquakes with the basic information of intensity of the movement, the origin, the coordinates, the exact hour and whether there will be an aftershock. Even the President of the Mexican Republic, as well as most governors of different states from Baja California to Quintana Roo used Twitter to report the damages caused by these natural catastrophes.
The negative side of social media is, as many authors say, that the time spent online reduces the amount of time spent on important face-to-face relationships. The internet fosters mostly shallow relationships. The act of leveraging the internet to engage in social connection exposes private information. The internet allows people to isolate themselves, and it is being used to promote intolerance. At this moment, it is very common to find people spending many hours of their day chatting with people from another place, but when the person whom you are talking to is unknown, it could be a risk for your integrity if your personal information is shared. In the most common case you won’t know the other person ever, but in case that you wish to make personal the interaction with your new “friend” there is a high probability that the other person won’t be sincere with you, and in many cases, the other people could be dangerous in case they intend to cause any damage to you.
José Francisco Delgado Jiménez 138896.
Daniela Gamboa Hernández 132866.