The Internet 's Impact On Social Capital

1375 Words Dec 9th, 2014 6 Pages
In the 21st century humans are presented with means to impact their societies potential in a greater way than ever before. With new technology, individuals have astounding control over the foundations of social value. One of the most powerful tools to mold these foundations is the Internet. After its creation in the 1950s, the Internet has witnessed excessive and continuous growth. As more and more people become part of the Internet’s population its power to shape society’s capital. To examine this power the definition of social capital must be clarified. Former president of the American Political Science Association, Robert Putnam explains in his book Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community that “social capital …show more content…
Like food and shelter, community development has also allocated a majority of human resources. From primitive inventions such as basic language and writing utensils to the telephone and the Internet, humans have a communal goal to connect more frequently and with more people. As of 2014, the Internet is the most successful device because it increases global connection and frequency of communication. The Internet increases community access enabling users to communicate with forty percent of the world, over three billion people (Internet). Increasing by almost thirty thousand users a day the Internet exhibits amounts of efficiency surpassing “ that of other communication technologies”(Howard 383). Before the Internet social networks were limited to local communities. Communication mainly occurred between people geographically close. The Internet has broken the constraint geography placed on community. Sociologist Barry Wellman discusses the Internets extension of society connectedness in Connecting Community: On- and Offline. With the Internet, people have “global connectivity” and “[i]nstead of being bound up in a neighborhood community where all know all” people create networks based on their unique traits not proximity (Wellman 25,27). Through this increased exchange between diverse people the global social capital is increased as well. The world as one large society sees a connectedness that benefits everyone as a whole and
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