An Overview of Social Networking

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1. Introduction
2. Overview of Social Networking
1) How Social Networking providers make a profit?
2) How the general community and businesses benefit from Social Networking?  
3) Privacy issues
3. Conclusion
4. Reference
1. Introduction
The means of social interaction had changed phenomenally, from physically meeting loved ones to just casually saying hi on their own beds using computer or mobile phones. Just one look at the common means of communication in a few mere decades, one can realize the phenomenal change in social networks along with the advancement in technology.  

The internet has been one of the greatest inventions in centuries, enabling people to do endless lists of things. In terms of social networking, there has been a growth in the number of social networking websites catering to the new generation’s needs and wants. For instance, the famous social networking site Facebook has one billion people using it every month (Lee 2012). It is also reported that Twitter, has 750tweets per second while Instagram, another emerging one, has 575 likes per second. The social networking sites are both being loved and used by many people around the world to this extent.  

Besides computers, mobile phones also have contributed a lot to the mode of social interactions. Though it has been less than a decade since the prevalent use of mobile phones, social networks have been actively integrated into smart phones nowadays. For example, the most popular social networking tool, Facebook, has been accessible with smart phone applications, allowing a wider range of users. In addition, smart phone itself also has developed its own exclusive communication tools such as Whatsapp, Line or Kakaotalk.  

2. Overview of Social Networking
Social networking before computers, people had to physically go out to meet up and talk to people for social interaction. They also used telephones at home, and they had to sit and really concentrate on their friendship. This cannot be seen commonly nowadays as the use of computers and mobile phones is so prevalent. Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitters, Myspace allow users to create personal networks for exchanging information with others (Weaver and Morrison 2008).  

1) How Social Networking providers make a profit?
It is commonly known that most of the existing social networking applications or websites are free for everyone to use. At this point, a question arises: “how do they make a profit then?”  
Five years ago, the providers of Social networking services make a profit through investments by venture capitalists. The investments are spent on research and development in order to make better social networking tools for the users. Social Networking providers also make earnings when other corporations advertise on the websites. The social networking websites are paid based on the advertisement banner size or the number of clicks on the advertisement banners that directs to the companies.  

In recent years, the way they make a profit is almost the same, except some changes. Some social networking sites had adopted extra features. An example is Google+ which shows up an advertisement customized to users’ interests. Another example is Youtube which allows video advertisement. The viewers of a video are obliged to watch the commercials before they watch the desired video clip. Besides, Social Networking websites started to adopt gaming functions. This allows gaming industries to actively develop new games for such social networking websites. The game users will also pay for game money which can be used in the virtual world. Furthermore, some social networking websites corporations when the users create accounts for business purposes.  

In the future, the social networking providers should find another means to earning a profit. An example can be charging...
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