Society: Social Networking Sites

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Are social networking sites doing us any good? Or are they just a sophisticated way of stalking people?

he spread of social networking sites has changed every person’s ways of socializing and communicating with friends and acquaintances. Since the birth of social networking sites, it has given enormous benefits to the sphere, as it allows to keep in touch with anyone and to collaboration with others even in different geographic areas. By having the full advantages of social networking sites, a big disadvantage existed for some reasons, which is cyber stalking. Cyber stalking is referred to as online harassment or electronic stalking is defined as the offensive, threatening communication through the Internet, via e-mail, chat rooms, or instant messaging or through other electronic devices (The University of Texas at Arlington, n.d.). This paper will be examined closely for further insight on how obvious is that stalking takes place in social networking sites and shows cyber stalking is socially acceptable and typical. Further, it will take a look at the several controversial issues about social networking sites makes life easier for stalkers.

The development of social networking sites, certain behaviors tend to dominate and become typical. Facebook has been graded as a stalker-friendly tool because we enable to update friends’ ongoing status, which it is socially acceptable for having such behavior acting. Hickerson (2010) argues ‘perhaps the strangest characteristic of Facebook society is the fact that when you are on Facebook it becomes socially acceptable to be a stalker’. As the availability of Facebook News Feed feature has become a controversial issue due to its stalker-friendly feature, which its feature provides a great opportunity and an easiest way for stalkers to discover about the user’s circumstances indiscriminately. Because the Facebook users strongly protest News Feed feature and critics argue News Feed feature is a godsend for stalkers (Leyden, 2006). The issue of News Feed has clearly showed that Facebook is more of a medium for permitting to stalk due to its stalker-friendly tool. Also, Facebook users will be gradually used to socially acceptable stalking behavior in any other social networking site.

In this age of ubiquitous social networking sites, Facebook, casual “stalking” of friends and acquaintances is typical and tolerable, yet it is not implicitly encouraged (Dubow, 2007). As casual stalking is about accessing and updating any information posted by the college friends in social networking medium. Also, many college students treat Facebook as the preferred way to update friends. However, the popularity of social networking sites may create a problem for women at college campuses. In a common sense, women usually are the easiest target compares to men due to women has been considered fragile. Alison Kiss, program director for Security on Campus argues social networking sites, MySpace and Facebook has created an easier way for stalkers who target women on college (Bazar, 2007). Stalking college students is easier because majority of students post agenda or current activities on Facebook, which these are a tendency and pattern to play a part in social networking sites. Apparently, it showed that there is a higher chance of stalking students than general public. As Keith Davis, a University of South Carolina psychology professor and editor of the book Stalking: Perspectives on Victims and Perpetrators said ‘the stalking rate is higher for college students than the public.’ (Bazar, 2007) Stalkers tend to look for easy target to make their life easier in stalking the victims. In the typical mindset of viewing women ability, they are weak-willed. Hence, most victims of any type of stalking are women because women are the easy targets for stalkers especially innocent women.

Purposeful individuals in accessing social networking sites could bring into another level of social relationship in...
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