The Facebook Influence

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______________________________________________________________ The Facebook Influence
Name of pupil: Zhang Ke Wei
School: Catholic High School (Primary)
Class: 5 Gentleness
Teacher-supervisor: Mdm Munawarrah
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INTRODUCTION
Background:
My interest in Facebook began after I read the book, The Facebook Effect by David Kirkpatrick published in 2010. In his book, David Kirkpatrick describes the practicality of Facebook and how its popularity transcends through other social networking tools alike, making it the second most visited website in the world. Facebook, as we know it, is a social networking tool, and since its inception, it became easy to spread news, share common goals and even for political parties to advance their political plan. Through it, one can share photos and videos with one another, and tag (naming the people in pictures) one another. There is also a built-in chat application, which can replace many instant messaging applications. There are also games, which are more fun as you can play the games with your friends. However in my research, I discovered that there is an age-limit which restricts people under the age of 13 to register an account on Facebook, blocking access to Facebook for pupils like me. With so many useful features to greatly simplify our communication, I wanted to be given a chance to study the features of Facebook and find out what makes it appealing (as the statistics from the book has revealed) and gather the perception of pupils under the age of 13 on the age-limit clause. In this way, I can propose an ideal social networking tool to my school’s IT HOD, which will enable pupils like me to acquire a “Facebook-like” account without an age-limit clause. Research Questions

What are pupils’ opinions about Facebook and the age-limit clause? What aspect of Facebook appeals to pupils? Using my prior knowledge of the Facebook tool through my readings, my aim was to gather pupils’ opinion on Facebook and find out more about what they thought about the age-limit clause. I then used my findings to come up with a detailed proposal, using diagrams and information from my literature findings to provide an alternative social networking site.

Analysis from “The Facebook Effect”
General features
Facebook is a social networking service. It is not the first of its kind, as MySpace and other services have already been launched then. However, Facebook is different in one way that it allowed users to customize many settings such as their profile picture and they could also make virtual friends, a process which allowed users to keep up with them easily. Features that were added later made it even more popular – photo and video sharing, applications and games. Games are now the most successful type of application on Facebook. Chat/Newsfeed application

The newsfeed feature basically lets users see their friends’ daily updates. It shows the activity within their list of friends. The user can either comment or respond to the newsfeed. The privacy setting

Kirkpatrick suggests that privacy is a problem with Facebook. In my project of my parents’ Facebook account, I discovered that the Facebook application is not transparent about what it does with users’ information. Facebook does not really conceal confidential information as long as the user updates it in his/her account. Age-limit

The age-limit setting protects children and limits access for the purpose of protecting children’s safety and privacy online.

METHOD OF GATHERING DATA
I used a convenient sampling to conduct a survey on Primary 5 Gifted Education Programme (GEP) pupils from Catholic High School (CHS) and Raffles Girls Primary School (RGPS), consisting of 41 and 33 pupils respectively. I wanted to find out what pupils find appealing about Facebook and their perception about the age-limit clause in mid-July. Bearing in mind the...
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