You may think, that the first thing we do after we wake up is taking care of basic necessities and etiquette, like brushing your teeth, having a bath etc. But what we really do the moment we wake up is search for our phone. We rummage around our bed, under our pillows or on the table, searching for that tiny rectangular object that holds our world together.
Cellphones, smartphones have established their roots deep into our daily lives. One of the most common things we do with our phone is check our social media applications, checking for RSVP s, replies for texts, our tags, posts etc. etc. Social media has become a form of life for many people.
They cannot survive without being online while eating, working or even when in the bathroom! So what exactly is social media?
A brief premise
It is a platform, where people can stay connected with each other without the so called for ‘physical contact’. It utilizes the internet to reach people even in the remotest corner of the world, have access to the network. Social Media was made famous by Mark Zuckerberg, when he started the Facebook initiative.
Facebook is a social media website, which allows users to connect with their friends and loved ones, see their photos, what they are doing and anything that they choose to share online. But there were a few attempts on social media before Facebook. Google’s Orkut initiative was one of them.
Though it has become fairly popular, it lacked the features that the users desired, like seeing other people online, texting them, getting real time feeds etc. Twitter is another very popular social media website. It allows people to share their thoughts and views.
You can ‘retweet‘ or share these thoughts or someone else’s post of you liked it. Twitter allows the masses to connect directly to their favorite celebrities, since most of them use Twitter. There are many other applications like Instagram, which is a photo sharing platform, where you can add photos about what you’re doing, your work and your favorite memories.
It has like and comment option, in case you want to say something about the picture. Another social media app that’s gaining prominence is Snapchat. Snapchat is another photo sharing social media application, but the cache being, the photos shared last only for a times interval, depending on the type of post.
A personal photo text will last a maximum of 10 seconds, and a photo story which you can post for everyone in your friend list to see, can last for 24 hours or a day.
Impact of our lives
Isn’t social media a blessing in disguise, since it allows connecting with our loved ones who are far away from us? Why are the experts concerned about these websites then? Social media helps you to reconnect with people, with whom you might have never talked.
A childhood friend who moved away. Your gang of best friends who you had to leave while relocating. There are stories that Facebook has helped sons find their mothers and vice versa. Social media is also a powerful tool for information exchange, raising awareness, promoting your business etc.
A majority of us are only aware of the news that we get from social media websites. You can create a page for business and post ads, by paying a small fee. But as useful as it is, social media can be a menace for us. There have been recent incident of cyber bullying, stalking etc. on social media sites. Such incidents can be very traumatizing to the victims.
And since anyone from around the world can connect with you, it is a cause of concern. But you also have the option of only divulging information to your friends, family etc.
There have been incidents of people’s pictures being downloaded from social media sites and edited to produce vulgar, revolting images. The website developers are working on methods to tackle these problems.
It is an accepted fact, that social media is an integral part of our lives, there’s no denying it. But is upon us, how we choose to use the service, how and whom we choose to interact with, that makes the difference.
Emerging Social media are
WhatsApp (Messenger app)
Speaky (Language exchange community)
And more …