The introduction of internet based social media in the 21st century has completely revolutionized modes of communication. As opposed to the old days when people used smoke and signs to convey information, recent years have seen the introduction of various modes of communication that have transformed the way people share information. According to Thussu (2006) the world has become a global village as a result of unprecedented freedom offered by numerous social based media platforms. Furthermore, in the process of sharing information, people have the opportunity to develop social networks and establish new relationships. This essay will explore the possible effects of new internet based social media on personal identity, intimacy, individual privacy and family life.
The introduction of new internet based social mediums has tremendously changed the modes of communication in the 21st century. Castells (2004) points out that the society has become “increasingly networked” as a result of the predominant use of the internet. The introduction of new media has bridged the gap in communication and increased the network of people in a much smaller sense (Gates, 2000). For instance, people no longer have to write letters or fax information, and wait for long periods before they receive replies. People do not have to travel for long distances or even make endless phone call to convey information. Today, the introduction of various social media platforms has made communication extremely effortless by the touch of a button.
The social media platform is abuzz with numerous websites that have transformed communication. Some of the most preferred social media platforms include Facebook, Twitter, Google chat, 2go, LinkedIn, MySpace and WhatsApp among others. In particular, Facebook has been recognized as the most active website with the highest traffic. This is because of its simplicity in term of communication, sharing of information and building long term relationships. In addition to transforming the society, Facebook has been associated with positive and negative impacts among its users (Wartman 2009, p. 115).
Facebook is undoubtedly the greatest invention in the world of social media platforms. Facebook is regarded as a community through which people develop a network of friends and share all manner of information. As a result of its influence among its users, Facebook is regarded as a “social movement” because it has significantly changed the mode of communication. Since it is a platform of socialization, Facebook has made it possible for people to keep in touch, share updates, upload photos and perform other actions quite easily. Further, it is regarded as a democratic process because people are free to share anything, thus making it an exceptionally interesting forum (Wittkower 2010, p. 215). In this regard, Facebook has allowed people to connect through personal computers, laptops or mobile phones by simply installing the Facebook application.