Role of Social Networking Sites Towards Social Change

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Role of Social Networking Sites towards social change

Anusuah.R[i]

Abstract

Social Networking Sites (SNS) is a group of Web sites that provide people with the opportunity to create an online profile and to share that profile with others (Barnes, 2006). The top ranked SNS in India are Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, Orkut, Google plus, etc. Besides electronic media, print media, Mobile phones and e-mails, SNS occupy a large space in every individual. When the first social networking site (classmate.com) was created in 1995, it just acted as a mere friend finder which helps the user to find their old friends and build relationship. Later looking at the huge success of networking sites hundreds of sites were created all around the world. Orkut was one of the famous SNS in India. When the traditional media is subjected to certain restrictions and pre-censorship in certain countries, the new media offers complete freedom of expression. When the mainstream media questions central or state’s functioning against people it is subjected to restrictions. Though a very few media provide unbiased news, most of the Mainstream media are owned by corporate companies whose priorities are celebrity issues, cricket, inaugurals of showrooms, commercialized entertainment, sensationalized talk shows and so on. SNS allow individuals to share their views and opinions. Apart from restrictions and censorship, individuals can share photographs, videos and links related to the social issues which can add volume to their views and also as a justification. Individual SNS users act as an opinion maker through networking sites. People those who follow them or in their friends circle comment their views on the posts. As it is networked the status update is shared by friends and friends of friends too. A medium is considered as an Alternative medium only when it notices the unnoticed, hears the unheard screams, expresses the feelings of marginalized groups, questions the authorities and challenge the biased mainstream media. No doubt social networking sites does all. It also serves as a source for the mainstream media. It helps to form communities, organize people together, changes the government.

Social networking Sites

Social Networking Sites (SNS) is a group of Web sites that provide people with the opportunity to create an online profile and to share that profile with others (Barnes, 2006). The top ranked SNS in India are Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, Orkut, Google plus, etc. Besides electronic media, print media, Mobile phones and e-mails, SNS occupy a large space in every individual. The reason behind is most of the colleges, universities and work places are bonded with internet. Social Networking succeeds in a big way because it directly interconnects individuals and provides opportunity for us to design our own space. They help individuals to connect with their friends, family and even with strangers. These sites act as a platform to express our views. It also helps us to built and form communities of similar tastes. “Social networking tools give senior leaders the power to communicate instantly and with great regularity and consistency with globally diverse teams” (Elaine Varelas, 2010)

When the first social networking site (classmate.com) was created in 1995, it just acted as a mere friend finder which helps the user to find their old friends and build relationship. Later looking at the huge success of networking sites hundreds of sites were created all around the world. Orkut was one of the famous SNS in India. After 2006 the concept of Facebook became a great success followed by twitter and recent Google plus. These sites can be used as public blogging, resource sharing, reflecting one’s views on any social issue. These sites pave a way for freedom of speech and expression. They can share what happened around them, with their views; find followers and likes for their updates.

Freedom of...
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