Archive for the ‘Facebook’ Category

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Does Social Media Help or Hurt Minority Groups?

March 3, 2011

Social media can be both a positive and negative for any user. This is no different for diverse groups who can both benefit and be hurt by social media.  Do you think social media benefits diverse minority groups or hurts them?

Here are the positive and negatives I see.

Positives

  • Social media can bring together people from all walks of life that would have never connected otherwise. As social media is evolving it is becoming more niche oriented.  So, diverse groups can use their niche to let them connect with exactly who they want to.
  • Once these diverse groups have connected they can then discuss the issues they are encountering via social media. This gives the group chances to bounce ideas off their peers and come up with solutions to problems.
  • The last advantage is a single individual belonging to a diverse group may be the only member of their group in that area. This can leave the individual very feeling isolated and thinking they don’t fit in. With social media they can find comfort and safety with people like them.

Negatives

  • Social Media for the most part is an open forum. So, just because diverse groups, for example homosexuals, are connecting via a facebook page doesn’t mean someone with hate for homosexuals can’t write hate speech all over the advocacy page.
  • There are also groups that come together over social media who create their own pages with the sole purpose of spreading hate for groups they do not like. These people sometimes are even more blatant in their hate when using the social media platform because they can hide behind the screen and feel protected that way.
  • Lastly, just like one of the advantages diverse groups have are they connect with people in their niche worldwide so can hate advocates. Since the internet is such a global thing today it makes it a lot easier for hate groups to spread their message and reach a large number of people.

Are there any other positives you see as social media users?

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The Future of Facebook

February 24, 2011

As the phenomena we know as Facebook continues to evolve and dominate more of our internet lives we have to ask what is the next step for Facebook?

Recently, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg answered this question in a blog post on Facebook. This social media giant will soon release a revamped messaging system. This messaging system will consist of three key features. First, Seamless Messaging, which means users can choose the medium (SMS, IMs, or E-Mail) they wish to use to communicate with their friends. The user sends out a message via whatever messaging platform they prefer and their friend receives that message via their preferred messaging tool. Second, Conversation History, allows you to see all past communication with an individual friend as a single conversation thread. Third, the Social Inbox will filter in only the messages that the user wants to see.


Check out this video for a full tour of Facebook’s new messaging service!

Good

In his blog post Zuckerberg outlined seven characteristics that will define this new messaging system: seamless, informal, immediate, immediate, personal, simple, minimal, and short. As a person that has grown up during this social media revolution these are all traits that attract me to social media. I am on Facebook more than any other site and being able to eliminate having to go to another site like Gmail is always a plus for me. I also like that all my communications with each friend is organized into a single conversation. This gets rid of looking through an endless list of single messages when looking for information from a past communication.

Bad

I see two problems with this new messaging system. First, I do not see people giving up email very easily, we are all still going to have to use email to an extent. There are plenty of people that are not Facebook users so we will have to resort to more traditional methods to communicate with them. Secondly, and more importantly to me is that if Facebook is now basically my email provider is this going to lead to even more junk mail/spam. One of the major ways Facebook already makes money is by selling its users information and likes to advertisers. I see endless spam in the future if Facebook allows advertisers into users emailing loop.

What do you think the impact of the new messaging system will be? Good or Bad? What do you think the future of Facebook will be?