03 August 2010

Social Media Virus

I wanted to try and keep the tone of this blog a bit more on politics and social media, but given the environment of my current internship I'm venturing into an unknown territory.

After I read this article I felt it was very much appropriate to blog on the topic. Last night I had a discussion with a few friends on how useless they viewed some forms of social media to be. They saw it as a space for shouting out the trivial moments of our unimportant lives and trying to make it something it's not. While there are some people that use these forms of communication to tell everyone how they just ate a cheeseburger, I think critics, or people who don't truly understand social media, are missing the point.

There are the people who use it rather casually, but the majority of users making the most noise in this setting aren't just shouting "OMG i painted my toenails today!" You'll find that these key influencers are posting photos of restaurants and food they really liked, or tagging a geo-location to somewhere they saw a really cool street performer, or providing traditional news media with the material that they'll be reporting later that evening, as the average citizen was the actual first person on the scene. The point is, social media isn't just a space that's being used to play Farmville and 'tell people every detail of your life'. Those that have embraced the features of the various platforms understand that it's more about sharing information and connecting with people around the globe.

I really liked the opening story to the article I've linked. It pretty much sums up how important social media is to our daily lives. It's the point I make in my dissertation and it seems to be the point that other sectors are making as well. It's not a fad, it's not something only for teens or hipsters; social media has spread and made the shift to connecting our digital life to our real life.

[LINK TO ARTICLE] - http://bit.ly/9dyrbp
Another article, talking about people who don't understand Social Media/Twitter - http://bit.ly/aEiRe4  
one more on ppl that love to hate twitter - http://bit.ly/cUWtUN

What do you think? Are social media sites just a glorified digital ego trip, or is there real value in the somewhat utopian freedom of speech open zone?

Swimming with this Mermaid