What are the causes behind social networking’s mass popularity?
Why does everyone use Twitter now?
What makes Facebook better than MySpace?
Social networking sites appear to want everyone in the world to use their site. The site’s popularity in modern culture and today’s society is undeniable. Even though the popularity of specific social network sites peaks and falls, as a whole, social networking has gained and sustained massive popularity. These sites have engraved their name on the walls of modern popular culture. This trend emerged and continues to prosper because of social, cultural, and economic conditions.
Societal factors affected the growth and popularity of this trend. With the invention of the internet, society had opened up a door that would allow for certain web creators to make a fortune. As society made tremendous technological advancements, creative web developers came up with ideas that would form a phenomenon. Society’s ability to continue to make technological advances and changes allows for these networking sites to take off. Social networking sites take advantage of text messages, emails, and instant messaging and use those resources to create extremely popular sites.
The social conditions of these sites allow friends and family to stay in touch. Society as a whole has become incredibly reliable on communication through social networking sites. For some, keeping in contact with someone who doesn't have a social networking site is very difficult, even with a telephone number. Another contributor is that parents like to feel they are a part of the times while still keeping an eye on their child. Social networking sites have become an altogether new way to communicate across the world, especially as their availability on phones and pagers allows for instant access at any time of the day. As the ease of access to these sites gets easier, their popularity will only grow
To a bystander it would appear that today’s culture wants nothing more than to communicate with others without actually speaking. From emails to text messages, the ability to engage in or completely ignore a conversation is one that has enticed billions. Our culture began to favor nonverbal communication with the creation email, and with this the wonders of nonverbal communication began.
As the use of text messages and instant messaging became popular, web researchers were already looking for the next best thing. That next best thing was the social network MySpace. MySpace was the first social networking site to gain worldwide popularity. However, Facebook soon replaced MySpace as the favorite and now Twitter and Bebo begin to gain popularity with social network crowd as well.
Because of cultural causes social networking sites receive a lot of approval and support. The ability to distinguish oneself from the massive online crowd allow for a user to meet people more like him. Groups and causes are extremely popular among the more recent social networking sites. Groups based on everything from race and religion to favorite bands or television shows. These sites also allow for users to customize and express themselves through their web page. The ability to stand out from a crowd and also find users with similar interests, allows social networking sites such approval from its users.
An economic factor that adds to the sites popularity is its massive and diverse user body. The first users of early social networking sites were young boys and girls, and old men who really wanted to meet young boys and girls. However, social networking sites began to make drastic improvements in both security and convenience. Soon the age of the users began to spread. Facebook is accessed so frequently by young adults that's it's easy to see why they are bombarded with information and frustrated at the amount of advertises blatantly aimed towards them to spend their money on a corporate or business. Teenagers may find their parents even grandparents on popular social networks. This variety of users is a perfect audience for corporations and big companies to advertise to. They purchase their advertising space and have a specific spot on a user’s page. The specific social networking site changes as new companies come out, and the heavy flow of money changes hands pretty frequently. A recent Observer article, written by David Smith explains that currently Facebook has many more unique visitors monthly than the apparently obsolete MySpace. Earlier in 2008, MySpace had a much more popularity than the young Facebook.
Another economic factor that has allowed social networking sites to stay in business is its convenience to advertise as a small entrepreneur. Just as corporations benefit off the diversity of the users of social networking sites, small time entertainers and entrepreneurs benefit as well. Facebook has taken a hard hit because students were not keen to the idea of being directly marketed to based on their likes and dislikes. These small time workers don’t purchase advertising space like corporations; but create profiles, free of charge, and get themselves out there. Many actresses, musicians, comedians, and web designers have all made professional carriers for themselves, starting from a social networking site.
Social networking sites such as Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, and Bebo are trends that show no signs of stopping in its quest for worldwide usage. However, with such a gigantic fan base and a very generous income, these sites face many problems. According to a recent New York Times article, specific sites such as Facebook are facing many accusations and problems that they will have to accommodate. Despite the ease of access, convenience, and worldwide usage, the phone is undoubtedly losing its hip and popular ways. These sites have truly made an impact on the world. This trend undoubtedly gained such power because of the social, cultural, and economic causes that allowed it to survive.