Social media is a concept that has developed with time; probably due to human necessity. The development of the internet followed the intention of the computer. Other forms such as the TV, newspapers among others are also efficient forms of social media. These make interactions between human beings better.

This social media has inevitably changed the way things run today. This thesis is developed to highlight the advantages as well as the odds, and proud that the advantages outweigh the odds, if well handled.

Introduction

Social media is such a dynamic concept that a if a definition of it were drawn, it is foreseeble that the same definition would be either be enhanced by being build up or alternatively or in the same instance some contradictions on the same definition would arise.

However, there are certain characteristics of social media that are known to all its users. Social media operates through the World Wide Web. Certain users have created websites that have different functionalities. The advent of social media came with the invention of computers and subsequently that of the internet. Here, information is made accessible to virtually every other person who has access to a computer that is internet enabled. This infromation stems from the various infromation sources. Libraries have created their own sites, people with information have also written up what they have and posted, as well as people with various needs have all put them on the internet .

Methods

The methodology used in the compilation of this thesis statement is from library resources. The Ashford Online Library was reliable in its souces. Other infromation given has been from sheer observation and analysis of today’s use of social media.

Discussion

Advantages of Social Media

The advantages that social media has poses to us are insummountible to what we had prevously in the age of smoke signals, let alone those of the telephone. Social networks have clearly been enhanced. A writter once said that at this age we do not have to go looking for a means of communication any more. These moyens are so much amid our environment that communication now becomes a matter of choice.

With such vast information, it has been preluded that knowledge is no longer power as had been previously thought to be the universal truth.

The information obtained is used in various fora. For instance, students in colleges and even universities are able to get to library books much moreeasily without the trouble of having to go physically to the library and search for the book, which could be in use by another student. Besides, the same information could be sourced from other sites. Wikipedia is the common culprit in this case.

Besides social networks, businesses have also been enhanced. They have taken the form of social networks to proliferate their functions. You will find that business people can now teleconference much more easily. The managers of multinational companies do not have to summnon their subordinates to a common place in order to have a meeting. Travel expenses have been duely reduced through teleconferencing, video calls, international dial ups, email, instant messaging, among a host of other activities.

Socially, networks such as twitter and facebook have been created. These enable individuals to not only connect with their friends and families but also build themselves as a brand. In facebook, one can talk to their friend who is miles away at quite minial charges. Their posts and documentations are representations of what kind of people they are. For instance if one’s future boss is their friend on the social network, they can be able to tell the kind of person they are and make judgement on whether to hire them, perhaps immediately.

Marketing is another business function that has flourished thanks to social networks. Some people may argue that the power of marketing is being drawn back by social media. I mean, it is only in the recent past that marketers targeted the newspapers, TV stations, etc. The targeted audience however is shifting to social media as their means of acquiring information. Smart companies have likewise shifted their focus. Nowadays, you will find that adverstisement made on the social media is much more interesting and has more revenue to it. These companies rely on haulers and bloggers, celebrity advertisements, website advertisement space among a host of other methods to advertise. The greatest advantage that comes with this marketing method is that feedback is often prompt. The market rarely hesitates on stating what it feels given that most of them are always on the internet. Companies have included the responses given in these social media networks as their key customer feedback sources.

Social media has in addition enabled green technology. The term refers to the attempts that are being made to conserve the environment through technology. By using soft copies instead of hard printed copies of information, there is inturn a reduction of the cutting down on trees. Apart form this, there is also the support given to campaigns on going green that have been running on the internet. These campaigns could perhaps not have been as successful if they were done on newspapers. There would have been a great contradiction of the mission. Today, you will find numerous sites that talk of the going green campaign

Some applications have made the lives of many people cheaper. These include the open source softwares that are being developed. While some companies such as Microsoft are charging quite exorbitant prices on their products, some computer techies are providind alternatives for free. These are for instance the linux operating system that was developed by a group of people who found it necessary to combine their kbowledge on the matter. Linux has its efficiencies. For instance when it comes to virus control, one can manage it better since you do not have to purchase an antivirus endorsed by Microsoft to delete it and clean uo your documents. It is probable that the developers of Linux probably made their connections through social media.

The Odds of Social Media

Debate on the ethics of social media has always been on. There are limitations that come along with this tool that is as much considered very helpful. Most of the controversies come with ethics. The point is that infromation disseminated is not always filtered. The bloggers, haulers, web managers have all sorts of information, some of which is detrimental to the social well being of individual.

The issue that has had much attention is on pornography. Society holds that any kind of pornographic material is not healthy. The challenge comes when even very young people have access to sites with pornography. Image I shows the statistics on the various age groups and how often they use social media. Their minds then become fed with information that may channel them to a life of sex and drugs, neglecting more elemental aspects of life like respect fro human dignity, education, giving back to society, honesty and responsibility. Adolescents have a lot of emotional rage that if not well controlled can be very detremental. Recent statistics have shown that younger people are indulging in sex and being drug dependent. This could be an influence of the infromatin that they acquire from social networks. The website seventeen.com has been well known for its adverstisement as well as inclusion of pornographic material therein.

The website Wikileaks has also found much attention and spun debate on its ethics since its establishment. The site releases information that is otherwise considered confidential. For instance, it released critical information of the US’s involvement in the Afghanistan war. The US this time had been involved in killings that were not at per with the statements on what the federal government’s main role there was. The killings violated human rights regulations and if found true then the state would have to face international judicial processes to come to justice. In addition, confidential information on corruption in Kenya was also released along information about an American company that deposited toxic waste to Ivory Coast. The intent of the founders of the organisation is vey to be known given that they do not have a code of ethics yet. It is so far assumed that it is in their will to perhaps cause another world war-the matters the site handles are very weighty and counld stir up a lot of political turmoil.

The internet and social media has provided employment to a vast number of people. Today, you will find advertisements all over the net on how to earn a good living amid the economic crisis at the comfort of your home or office. Individuals all over have engaged in this enterprise and its likes and indeed, they have earned themselves lumpsums. The odds however come in when their social connections become limited. As much as they could be involved in facebook and twitter, there is often some kind of real time social limitations that build up. The minds of these people work efficiently but what they have goes into writing. When taken out to a real social place, they tend to become shy. Attention deficit disorder (ADD) could also build up within them. These will then make them seek other sources of social connections. For instance some have been known to coax people on dating sites and make them believe that they are real lovers while intead this other person only yearns for a social connection which  they cannot achieve given their attention deficit disorder condition. Some people have admitted that at times when faced with such ac ondition they resort to turn off their computers for a while and connect with their family and friends face to face.

Other challenges that social media posses include: The infringement of property through plagiarism and violations on the codes of intelligent property. Such cases are evident in many areas. Case in point is the students who pick out infrmation straight from sites like Wikipedia and print them out to hand in their assignments. These students practice a lot of plagiarism. Plagiarism is punishable by the law since it is considered as theft. In addition, bloggers often have a tendancy of the same. They pick out information they obtained from another bloggers site but instead of sifting it through to come up with their own interpretation on the same, they write it up in their blogs just as it was. Several interventions have subsequently been made. Bloggers have complained that they find it pure injustice for a person to copy their work, one that they spent days trying to put up the pieces together. For some sites like today’s socialmediatoday.com, the bloggers have been asked to identify any blogger who plagiarises. These ones are blocked from posting any kind of work on any of the sites’s related sites.

Conclusion

Wikipedia, the social media go-to reference created by the public in the form of thousnds of contributors defines social media as ‘media for social interaction, using highly accessible and scalable communication techniques. Social media is the use of web-based and mobile technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogue.

The discussion provided provides the advantages as well as the odds of social media. A further development of this thesis will provide statistics as well as further discussion on the same. Social media as explained emerged due to necessity. Its intention must have helped up solve a lot of the problems that were existent. Therefore, social media is quite an advantage to human beings.

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