Social media and networking has had a profound effect over American culture over recent years. One main reason why social networking sites are so popular is that they encourage group mentality. According to Webcredible's "Designing online social networks: The theories of social groups,” the reason most people join social networking sites and participate in social media are because they: Provide encouragement and support
Establish identity with others and fulfill the need to feel included Provide the outlet for some people to establish their need for recognition, social status, control and/or leadership Alternatively, provide the necessary control over aspects of lives for those who don't want to be leaders (e.g. Weight Watchers) Help establish friends, relationships and the opportunity to interact with others
Because social networking sites capitalize on these needs and allow people to fulfill these social needs, they have been able to permeate and permanently alter our culture. Prime examples of prominent social networking are: Myspace, Youtube, and Facebook. Weblogs are also a rising social media phenomenon that is shaping our culture. They each contribute and cater to a specific social need in the growing Internet-centric American culture. However, for each positive change to our society, there are also negative repercussions.
Myspace serves as a quintessential example of a successful entertainment social networking site. It reaches users from LA to Australia, from Japan to Jersey and exposes new movies, comedians, artists to about 245 million users. Through Myspace, the once distant connection between entertainers and their fans is bridged. These resulting connections have changed the traditional enjoyment of entertainment and allows for the typical fan to have a closer, more personal experience. While Myspace is renowned for its open format, they have also run into some trouble with child predators. Larry...