A few days ago, I had to write a letter to my former roommate who is now in the Boot Camp. It never occurred to me that writing a casual letter could so much work, especially given the long disconnect from offline (using a pen and writing pad) to online (social media) communication. We shouldn’t be too quick to equate this online reliance to a downside of social media, but maintaining different social networking platforms can truly weakens interpersonal communication.
Talking about social networking sites, I just found WeChat, a platform I had no prior knowledge about. Similar to Whatsapp on mobile, WeChat provides users with a host of interesting options, ranging from group chat to video calls, and much more. With the ever-growing popularity of these social networking sites, there has been a paradigm shift from what can now be referred to as “vintage media,” to the new media. A look at some of these platforms may help paint a better picture in your mind.
YOUTUBE – A “window to view the world.” The platform is a video sharing website that allows users upload and share videos with others. Long before YouTube, most people learnt about other places and cultures from books, movies, and personal experiences through travels.
FOURSQUARE – A location-based social networking platform. Foursquare, provides users with the opportunity to share location with friends via mobile devices, by way of geo-tags. People using this media can check into places like bars and restaurants, and share their visits.
LINKEDIN – A shift from the traditional business card holders to an online professional profile. LinkedIn is a social networking site mainly used for professional networking. Users can create profiles that showcase their professional skills, and work experiences.
TWITTER – Similar to “post-it” notes, but on a digital level, Twitter allows users to send short messages (140 characters) called tweets to one another. The platform allows for real-time connectivity among users.
SKYPE – The service doesn’t only allow users make both regular and video calls to other users, but also provides an avenue for instant messaging, and file sharing. Through Skype, phone calls may also be placed to recipients on traditional telephone networks.
FACEBOOK – Similar to an address book, Facebook is a social networking site that allows users keep in touch with friends, family, and other acquaintances. It may as well be likened to a social media hub because it provides easy syndication with other social networking platforms.
WORDPRESS – Individuals may not have to share notes again, as this platform provides an avenue for users to share thoughts about a passion, brand or industry. WordPress is a free and open source blogging tool, and one of the most popular blogging systems in use on the web.
The list goes on and on; from social Apps for wine, to social platforms for music sharing, like Spotify and Pandora. Judging from the rate at which new social networking site are introduced every day, one can only wonder what the future holds.
What social networking sites have marveled you? Any thoughts on this?