Social Networking: Influence on Society and Redefining Social Relationships.

1282 WordsMay 6, 20136 Pages
Social Networking: Influence on Society and Redefining Social Relationships. Social networking websites such as Face book, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn and You Tube are reaching 1.2 Billion users, globally, (ComScore, 2012). Their unprecedented popularity has the opportunity to influence lives in numerous ways. Current research is revealing socialising online is not only popular among young people but across older generations as well, (Hampton, Goulet, Rainie, Purcell, 2010) (ComScore, 2012). Several online communities are redefining traditional social relationships by developing a new style of internet initiated intimacy. Furthermore, academics may have to adapt current research processes before being able to truly understand the extent…show more content…
Perhaps the most intimidating element of social networking is the combination of potential risks with the amount of people who are accessing these sites. Social networking is a global phenomenon, in the past teenagers and college students were the most active users, but now older generations are embracing this new technology (ComScore, 2012). A recent survey of 2,255 people conducted by the Pew Research Centre found 16% of Social Networking users were aged between 18 to 22 years old, 32% were between 23 – 35 years, 26% between 36 – 49 years, 20% between 50 – 65 years and 6% were aged 65+. (Hampton, Goulet, Rainie, Purcell, 2010). With an increasing number of people choosing to engage in social networking sites, across all age ranges, it is interesting to look at how this phenomenon might be redefining social relationships. Deborah Chambers in her book ‘New Social ties: Contemporary connections in a fragmented society’ suggests that social networking sites have ‘sparked an explosion in a distinctive kind of relationship: one formed without or before face to face contact.’ (Chambers, 2006, p134) Chambers proposes that people are interacting, intimately, through social networking sites and thus developing a new style of Internet-initiated relationships. These connections are redefining the traditional face to face relationships because they allow the participant to experiment with their
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