Social Networking: How Twitter Shapes Society
Just like any other thing in the world, the Internet has both positive and negative effects on the society today. However, one specific part of the web - social networking - has become the first thing that comes to ones mind when the Internet is mentioned. What is the reason for this obsession? Why do people enjoy using the Internet for communication? In terms of the example of Twitter.com, one can study the human social behavior and understand the role of social networking sites in the life of the modern world.
Firstly, it is necessary to define the purpose of Twitter. Twitter is a service for friends, family, and coworkers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages. People write short updates, often called "Tweets" of 140 characters or fewer. These messages are posted to your profile, sent to your followers, and are searchable on Twitter search (New User FAQs). This means that the initial purpose of the website is to share small pieces of information with the users. The aim has shaped the form of the website, which is how one uses Twitter. The website, however, can be used for a number of purposes, thus making itself interesting for a large audience.
If someone wants to show his profile to a large number of people, he or she should definitely use Twitter first. With its help, one can create his or her image and develop a personal brand according to ones own desires. Not only it is obvious from a persons published data, including messages, pictures, photos, quotes, videos etc., but also from other pages followed by a person. It is easy to understand the interests of a user from what he or she is reading.
Twitter can also be viewed as a source of entertainment, since there are numerous pages about humor, trends, quotes of famous people, celebrities themselves and what not. Many organizations, companies and websites have their profiles on Twitter, so that any person can use their links to learn more about their products. It is easy to use the search system to find any preferred topic.
Since blogging has become popular today, people use Twitter as an easy way to create a blog, whether it is devoted to a particular theme or simply to everything that comes to the users mind. This blog is restricted, however, to a 140-character updates, so if it is not enough, it is possible to post a link to an original blog. There are several privacy levels, and one can adjust his or her profile to the preferred level of privacy, depending on ones own choice.
As it was already mentioned, Twitter is a multipurpose website. One of its main functions is communication, a feature of any social networking site. If books influence other books, and films influence other films, social websites influence how people socialize (Ruszkiewicz and Dolmage 223). Individuals tend to interact through the Internet more often than in real life. Because communication is the expression of social relations, it is a priority. Human beings cannot live on their own, cannot survive living alone. There are several types of communication, and Twitter can be used for all of them, from business to friends and family.
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Communication can be defined as information sharing between its members. Nevertheless, if to view information sharing from the point where information is in the first place and sharing is not the focus, it becomes a separate category that transforms into the second crucial function of Twitter. The website makes it convenient to post any data in a form of links to other ones, including news, weather forecasts, videos, pictures and everything on the Web. By using the search system, Twitter can also be used for any type of research concerning culture or business (Ruszkiewicz and Dolmage 359).
As for business, Twitter is a wonderful opportunity to promote products and services. In order to reach the preferred audience, one can use social networking, which has, in fact, become a vital business tool. Advertisement on the Internet is flexible, variable and amusing. Keeping up-to-date and making the customer aware is what businesses should consider. Twitter is a good solution to this problem.
Twitter influences society today because of a number of advantages. First, is easy and a quick way of sharing any type of information. Second, Twitter is a special system, where people can build new connections or sustain the existing ones. Third, the user always has a choice and an opportunity to sort out information according to his interests.
Disadvantages include a limited number of characters that can be posted at a time and the uncomfortable way of sending private messages. Besides, it can sometimes be annoying to go on every link and load a new webpage every time.
Just as every social networking site, Twitter shapes society by spreading new trends and memes. People restrict their ways to expressing themselves to 140 characters or simply post a link to a piece of information they find interesting or significant. On the one hand, people learn how to analyze data and conduct the most relevant items, but on the other, comments on them are not always objective.
Thus, Twitter is a good example of how people can socialize, work and simply chat in a form, which is unique and crucial in the way individuals express themselves. It is the means of either wearing a mask or opening ones heart, just as every social network site.