RESEARCH STUDY ABOUT “THE WORLD OF SOCIAL NETWORKING”

Venus Maruja P. Santiago Esther Rose I. Hernandez Sheila Marie C. Bola 4th Year, Section Committed

Issued to:

Ms. Catherine F. Jimenez (Teacher, English IV) on this 5th day of March, 2012

THE WORLD OF SOCIAL NETWORKING

I.

Early to Present Methods of Communication: An Introduction

II.

The Social Networking a. Definition b. History

III.

How it works? a. Typical features b. Additional features

IV.

Social Networking and the other fields a. b. c. d. e. Science Education Employment Business Broadcast Media

V.

The Global Effect of SNS

VI.

The Impact and Issues a. Privacy b. Online Bullying c. Psychological ability

VII.

Factors to be Consider Affecting by Social Networking a. b. c. d. Privacy Time Management Reputation Friendships

VIII.

Conclusion Bibliography

THE WORLD OF SOCIAL NETWORKING

I. Early to Present Methods of Communication: An Introduction

On early times, people always use handwritten letters or cards (also known as Snail Mail) to keeping in touch to their loved ones and friends. It is warm and personal, but it takes time to write and days to reach the recipient. But before that, people usually communicate by face-to-face conversations. On this method, it includes all the subtle nuances of facial expression, tone of voice and gestures. But both parties must be available to talk.

As time passes by, aside from face-to-face conversations and handwritten letters or cards, people may now communicate using phone call. On the early 90‟s, text messaging and instant messaging or chat immerged. And now, electronic mail system or E-mail, that can be composed and delivered quickly, but emotion is often lacking or easy to misinterpret, like text messaging, added to the methods of communication.

Never have there been so many options for keeping in touch, and these early methods of communications are still useful until now. But how about social networking?

II. The Social Networking

Definition As Wikipedia describes Social Networking, it is an online service, platform, or site that focuses on building and reflecting of social networks or social relations among people,

who, for example, share interests and/or activities. A social network service consists of a representation of each user (often a profile), his/her social links, and a variety of additional services. Most social network services are web-based and provide means for users to interact over the Internet, such as e-mail and instant messaging. Online community services are sometimes considered as a social network service, though in a broader sense, social network service usually means an individual-centered service whereas online community services are group-centered. Social networking sites allow users to share ideas, activities, events, and interests within their individual networks.

Social network are web-based services and allow individuals to construct a public or semi-private profile within a bounded system. Also, it articulate a list of other users with whom they share a connection and view and traverse their list of connections and those made by others within the system. It emphasizes relationship initiation, often between strangers.

History Many prototypical features of social networking sites were also present in online services such as America Online, Prodigy, CompuServe, The WELL. Early social networking on the World Wide Web began in the form of generalized online communities such as Theglobe.com (1995), Geocities (1994) and Tripod.com (1995). Many of these early communities focused on bringing people together to interact with each other through chat rooms, and encouraged users to share personal information and ideas via personal webpages by providing easy-to-use publishing tools and free or inexpensive webspace.

The first recognizable social network site was launched in 1997. The website is SixDegrees.com. The features on this website were allowed users to create profiles, and list their friends. In 1998, they‟ve added surfing the friends list. Another social network site was formed, the Classmates.com. Classmates.com allowed people to affiliate with their high school or college surf the network for others who were also affiliated. But unlike SixDegrees.com, Classmates.com users could not create profiles or surf the Friends List.

By the year 2000, SixDegrees.com was closed and Makeoutclub began the service, then Hub Culture and Friendster in 2002, and soon became part of the Internet mainstream. Friendster was followed by MySpace and LinkedIn a year later, and, finally, Bebo. Attesting to the rapid increase in social networking sites' popularity, by 2005, it was reported that MySpace was getting more page views than Google. Facebook, launched in 2004, became the largest social networking site in the world in early 2009, and remains largest of all social networks.

III. How it works?

Typical features Social networking sites share a variety of technical features. The most basic of these are visible profiles with a list of "friends" who are also users of the site. A profile is generated from answers to questions, such as age, location, interests, etc. Some sites allow users to upload pictures, add multimedia content or modify the look and feel of the profile. Others, e.g., Facebook, allow users to enhance their profile by adding modules or

"Applications." Many sites allow users to post blog entries, search for others with similar interests and compile and share lists of contacts. User profiles often have a section dedicated to comments from friends and other users. To protect user privacy, social networks typically have controls that allow users to choose who can view their profile, contact them, add them to their list of contacts, and so on.

Additional features Some social networks have additional features, such as the ability to create groups that share common interests or affiliations, upload or stream live videos, and hold discussions in forums. Geosocial networking co-opts Internet mapping services to organize user participation around geographic features and their attributes.

Lately, mobile social networking has become popular. In most mobile communities, mobile phone users can now create their own profiles, make friends, participate in chat rooms, create chat rooms, hold private conversations, share photos and videos, and share blogs by using their mobile phone. Some companies provide wireless services that allow their customers to build their own mobile community and brand it; one of the most popular wireless services for social networking is Facebook Mobile.

IV. Social Networking and the other fields

Science Social networking is now being used by some scientific groups / organizations to expand their knowledge and share their ideas to other people without new means of

communicating on their theories that might become “isolated and irrelevant”. Science communities found out on their study that by using social networking, exchanging information with one another may increase their learning on their field.

Education Nowadays, social networking is used as one of the medium of teaching or educational tool. Teachers started to familiarize themselves to some social networking sites to use it as their advantage to their students, since many students are already using a wide-range of social networking sites. Professors are doing everything to reach and teach their students, from creating chat-room forums and groups to extend classroom discussion to posting assignments, tests and quizzes, to assisting with homework outside of the classroom setting. It is also helpful for them to have teacher-parent communication. It make possible and more convenient for parents to ask questions and voice concerns without having to meet face-to-face. The advent of social networking platforms may also be impacting the way(s) in which learners engage with technology in general. The use of online social networks by libraries is also an increasingly prevalent and growing tool that is being used to communicate with more potential library users, as well as extending the services provided by individual libraries. Social networks are also emerging as online yearbooks, both public and private. Some sites allows anyone from the general public to register and connect. A new trend emerging is private label yearbooks accessible only by students, parents, and teachers of a particular school, similar to Facebook's beginning within Harvard.

Employment A final rise in social network use is being driven by college students using the services to network with professionals for internship and job opportunities. Many schools have implemented online alumni directories which serve as makeshift social networks that current and former students can turn to for career advice.

Currently, some headhunters and companies use social networking to post job advertisement and seek applicants. They encourage these people to apply, using a social networking site.

Business Few social networks currently charge money for membership. In part, this may be because social networking is a relatively new service, and the value of using them has not been firmly established in customers' mind. Companies such

as MySpace and Facebook sell online advertising on their site. Their business model is based upon large membership count, and charging for membership would be counterproductive. Some believe that the deeper information that the sites have on each user will allow much better targeted advertising than any other site can currently provide.

They use social networking to promote their business and encourage users to join with them by simply clicking the link or liking it.

Social

networks

connect

people

at

low

cost;

this

can

be

beneficial

for entrepreneurs and small businesses looking to expand their contact bases. These networks often act as a customer relationship management tool for companies selling products and services. Companies can also use social networks for advertising in the form of banners and text ads. Since businesses operate globally, social networks can make it easier to keep in touch with contacts around the world.

Broadcast Media Social networking is now part of what we called “media portal”. TV stations use it to broadcast latest news and upcoming events. It is also use by the users/members of a social networking site to join on some discussions, expressing their opinions on the topic.

People can easily access social networking sites, and now, they are updated on current news without turning on the TV or listening to the radio. Here in the Philippines, TV stations like GMA 7, TV 5 and ABS-CBN 2 always update their accounts on Facebook in bringing the news to the people, anytime and anywhere. Also, on July 2011, GMA 7 creates the new campaign Think Before You Click - a campaign by GMA News to promote responsible use of social media.

V. The Global Effect of Social Networking

While MySpace attracted the majority of media attention in the U.S. and abroad, Social Networking Sites were growing in popularity worldwide. Friendster gained traction in the

Pacific Islands, Orkut became the premier Social Networking Site in Brazil before growing rapidly in India, Mixi attained widespread adoption in Japan, LunarStorm took off in Sweden, Dutch users embraced Hyves, Grono captured Poland, Hi5 was adopted in smaller countries in Latin America, South America, and Europe, and Bebo became very popular in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Australia. Additionally, previously popular communication and community services began implementing Social Networking Site features. The Chinese QQ instant messaging service instantly became the largest SNS worldwide when it added profiles and made friends visible, while the forum tool Cyworld cornered the Korean market by introducing homepages and buddies.

Blogging services with complete SNS features also became popular. In the U.S., blogging tools with SNS features, such as Xanga, LiveJournal, and Vox, attracted broad audiences. Skyrock reigns in France, and Windows Live Spaces dominates numerous markets worldwide, including in Mexico, Italy, and Spain. Although Social Networking Sites like QQ, Orkut, and Live Spaces are just as large as, if not larger than, MySpace, they receive little coverage in U.S. and English-speaking media, making it difficult to track their trajectories.

Alongside these open services, others launched to support niche demographics before expanding to a broader audience. Facebook was designed to support distinct college networks only. Facebook began in early 2004 as a Harvard-only Social Networking Site. To join, a user had to have a harvard.edu email address. As Facebook began supporting other schools, those users were also required to have university email addresses

associated with those institutions, a requirement that kept the site relatively closed and contributed to users' perceptions of the site as an intimate, private community.

Beginning in September 2005, Facebook expanded to include high school students, professionals inside corporate networks, and, eventually, everyone. The change to open signup did not mean that new users could easily access users in closed networks— gaining access to corporate networks still required the appropriate .com address, while gaining access to high school networks required administrator approval. (As of this writing, only membership in regional networks requires no permission.) Facebook users are unable to make their full profiles public to all users. Another feature that differentiates Facebook is the ability for outside developers to build "Applications" which allow users to personalize their profiles and perform other tasks, such as compare movie preferences and chart travel histories.

VI. The Impact and Issues

Social networking service made people more convenient when it comes to communicating to their loved ones very fast. They can also share their interests and activities across other fields, such as the fields being discussed a while ago. It brought information quickly and enhances the knowledge of others once you share. Some of users also tried to create their own social networking service by purchasing a hosting service.

Social networking sites, such as Facebook, started on a small community, but now, it makes a worldwide trend. Comscore, a leader in measuring the digital world, says that currently, there are no reliable data regarding how many people use Social Networking service, although marketing research indicates that social networking sites are growing in popularity worldwide. This growth has prompted many corporations to invest time and money in creating, purchasing, promoting, and advertising.. At the same time, other companies are blocking their employees from accessing the sites.

The rise indicates a shift in the organization of online communities. While websites dedicated to communities of interest still exist and prosper, social networking service is primarily organized around people, not interests. Early public online communities such as Usenet on the early years and public discussion forums were structured by topics or according to topical hierarchies, but social network sites are structured as personal networks, with the individual at the center of their own community. This more accurately mirrors unmediated social structures, where the world is composed of networks, not groups. The introduction of its features has introduced a new organizational framework for online communities, and with it, a vibrant new research context. However, some groups started to investigate how the impact of social networking service into the issues of privacy, online bullying, and psychological effect.

Privacy Privacy concerns with social networking services have become a controversial and much publicised topic since the creation and increasing popularity of social networking sites

such as Bebo, Myspace and the currently most used social networking site, Facebook. Issues relating to stalking, identity theft, sexual predators and employment consistently arise, as well as the ethics regarding data storage and the management and sharing of such data. A security issue occurs when a hacker gains unauthorized access to a site's protected coding or written language. Privacy issues don't necessarily have to involve security breaches. The potential harm to an individual user really boils down to how much a user engages in a social networking site, as well as the amount of the information they're willing to share. A user with more viewers or apart of groups is a lot more likely to be harmed by a breach than someone who barely uses the site.

In addition, there is a perceived privacy threat in relation to placing too much personal information in the hands of large corporations or governmental bodies, allowing a profile to be produced on an individual's behavior on which decisions, detrimental to an individual, may be taken.

Privacy on social networking sites can be undermined by many factors. For example, users may disclose personal information, sites may not take adequate steps to protect user privacy, and third parties frequently use information posted on social networks for a variety of purposes. For the next generation, social networking sites have become the preferred forum for social interactions, from posturing and role playing to simply sounding off. However, because such forums are relatively easy to access, posted content can be reviewed by anyone with an interest in the users' personal information.

Online Bullying Online bullying, also called cyber-bullying, is a relatively common occurrence and it can often result in emotional trauma for the victim. There are not many limitations as to what individuals can post when online. Individuals are given the power to post offensive remarks or pictures that could potentially cause a great amount of emotional pain for another individual. In using social networking site, we must aware on what are we going to post or share. Some studies state that online bullying victims have lower self-esteem, increased suicidal ideation, and a variety of emotional responses, retaliating, being scared, frustrated, angry, and depressed. One of the most damaging effects is that a victim begins to avoid friends and activities, often the very intention of the cyber-bully.

However, bad experiences came from the individuals who bullied online knew how to managed the experience, such as blocking the person from contacting them, indicating that the experience had led them to consider ways to avoid such occurrences in future.

Psychological Effect As social networking sites have raised in popularity over the past years, people have been spending an excessive amount of time on the Internet in general and social networking sites in specific. This has led researchers to debate the establishment of Internet addiction as an actual clinical disorder. Social networking can also affect the extent to which a person feels lonely.

Truly, there is no doubt that people are often more eager about embracing new technologies and become highly skilled very quickly. They are also more vulnerable and

less inhibited in their communication and therefore may become exposed to risks. Some studies indicate that people using online social networking are more likely to be those that rate themselves as having moderate levels of shyness and sociability, suggesting individuals who are likely to be competent socially, have already well-developed friendship networks prior to joining online networks, and develop new friends easily. Further investigation of the relationship between levels of sociability and time spent on social networking sites showed that as sociability increased, time spent using social networking sites increased.

This provides further support to the notion that patterns of face-to-face communication are replicated in the online environment. This is consistent with what sociologists describe as a social network theory, a theory based on the view that it is the relationships between people that will have an impact on patterns of social networking regardless of the mode of communication.

VII. Factors to be Consider Affecting by Social Networking

As with virtually any use of the Internet, social networking has its dangers. With that in mind, we can consider the following factors:

Privacy If we are not careful, our profile information, photos, status updates, and comments could reveal too much. They might reveal such things as where we live, when we are at home,

where we work, or where we go to school. Our address along with a brief post such as, “We leave for vacation tomorrow!” is enough to tell a thief where and when to strike.

Other details—for instance, our e-mail address, our date of birth, or our phone number could leave us open to harassment, bullying, or identity theft. Yet, many people readily divulge such information on their social networking page. People tend to forget that once they post something online, it is in the public domain.

Even if they specify that their status updates are to be shared with “Friends Only,” they have no control over what those friends might do with the information. Really, anything posted on a social network should be viewed as public or as material that can easily be made public.

What can we do here is to be thoroughly familiar with the privacy settings on our social network, and use them. Restrict access to our status updates and photos to people we know and trust. Even then, realize that what we post can be made more public than we intend. Regularly review our page, and ask ourselves whether anything we have revealed could be used by unscrupulous individuals to locate us or to steal our identity. Even among our friends, do not post information that could violate our privacy or the privacy

of another person. If we have sensitive information to relate, use another form of communication, such as talking on the phone.

Time Management Social networking can consume our time and distract us from more vital activities. The more contacts we have, the more time we will spend social networking and the more addictive it can be. Some individuals say, “It‟s hard to get off a social networking site, even when you do.” Social networking is like a vortex that sucks us in, and we have no idea you‟ve been caught.

Time is a commodity that we cannot afford to waste. So why not set a budget for it, just as we would for our money? First, write down an amount of time that feels would be reasonable to spend networking. Then track ourselves for a month, and see how well you kept your resolve. Make adjustments where needed. Never let social networking—or any online activity, for that matter—interferes with the friendships you should be cultivating within your own household.

Reputation What you post on a social network carves out a reputation for you that may be difficult to erase. Many seem oblivious to the potential danger. Damaging your reputation on a social network can have long-range consequences.

You may try this: Look at your social network page and try to see it the way others would see it. Ask yourself these questions: „Is this how I really want to be viewed? If someone looked at my posted photos and had to describe my character as they perceived it, what terms would likely come to that person‟s mind? “Flirty”? “Sexy”? If so, is that the way I want to be seen when I apply for a job, for example, and my prospective employer looks at my page? Do these pictures really represent the values I stand for?‟ If you are a young person, ask yourself: „What if my parents, a teacher, or an adult whom I look up to viewed my page? Would I be embarrassed at what they could see and read?

Friendship Your friendships influence how you think and act. So it only makes sense to be selective about whom you befriend on a social network. Some accept dozens or even hundreds of friend requests from people they hardly know—or do not know at all. Others discover that not all on their list of friends are good associates.

Set up a „friending policy.‟ For example, some have put limits on themselves with regard to friendships. You may allow that you truly know them, never add strangers. If you receive a friend request from someone you don‟t know, you can ignore it. You can also set a very strict privacy setting. Always remember that not all of the individuals on a social networking were OK for you to associate with them. The best guideline is to only a friend people you know and have a connection with offline.

VIII. Conclusion

Social networking service truly invaded the new generation. We found out that it made our method of communication immerged by using the technology. We knew how it works by understanding the history behind it and the current features found on the existing social networking sites. Also, social networking became useful to other fields; it was used as an advantage. Although social networking gives us positive results, we still need to consider the potential dangers of it. Always bear in mind that anything found on our profiles reflects to us. We must think ways on how to use social networking properly. Like what the campaign of a TV station, “Think Before You Click”. We need to consider the factors given on this research study, for us to be safe and secure.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Coyne, Elliot, “Effects of Social Networking”, https://sites.google.com/site/elliottcoyne8292/research-paper---effects-of-socialnetworking, dated 2010.

Boyd, d. m., & Ellison, N. B. Social network sites: Definition, history, and scholarship. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 13(1), article 11. http://jcmc.indiana.edu/vol13/issue1/boyd.ellison.html, released year 2007 Wikipedia, “Social Networking Service”, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_networking_service, as of March 2, 2012 Wikipedia, “Social Networking in the Philippines”, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_networking_in_the_Philippines, as of March, 2, 2012 Awake, “What Should You Know About Social Networking?”, Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania. Volume 93, Number 2, pp. 4-9. dated February, 2012. Webultima, “Social Networking”, http://webultima.com/blog/?p=54, as of November, 2009.

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