Posts Tagged With: Social media

Social Media: Does it complement or detract from life?

Social media is key part of all of our lives and everyday it seems that something happens to reinforce its impact on our lives. It is estimated that the average person in america spends upwards on 37 minutes per day social networking and that 46% of web users are influenced by social media when making a purchase (https://www.marketingtechblog.com/2014-statistics-trends-businesses-social-media/).

During the social media boom around 2006 the younger generation (18-30) were by far the quickest to adopt the technology; but recently the largest growth has been seen amongst 45-50 year olds. I think its impressive how older generations are adopting the technology and making use of it in ways that I wouldn’t have even imagined.

Personally, what I find most interesting is that as older generations come on board it seems that the technology is being used more as an extension of social activity that is already taking place offline. One of the most vibrant Facebook groups that I am a member of is the `Consett and District Heritage Initiative. Consett has always had a large number of individuals interested in local history and groups such as this are extending activities that already take place offline to allow a greater number of people to get involved with the conversations and really bring history to life.

With social media being used in this way I wonder if critics ever had anything to be worried about when arguing that online social interaction was going to have a negative impact on real life social interaction. I find that my online life compliments and enhances my actual life and far from becoming more of a recluse it actually causes me to interact with a much greater range of people some of whom I would otherwise not have the opportunity to interact with.

Whats your experience of social media? Does it enhance or detract from your “real life”?

Advertisements
Categories: Social, Technology | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Meeting People through the use of Technology

When I arrived in San Francisco on Sunday I didn’t really know anyone and had no plans for the day. I had been using a great app called Glassboard to share ideas and experiences with other attendees so posted a message asking if anyone else was at a loose end.

Within a few moments a message popped up from another developer also free and very quickly we ended up heading out for some lunch.

A similar thing happened on Monday, someone posted on Glassboard looking for people to have dinner with, within 30 minutes 12 people had congregated in the foyer of Moscane West and we all headed out for an Indian.

In both of these cases technology has enabled me to become more social, had I not had access to Glassboard I might well have ended up eating dinner alone and wouldn’t have made new and exciting connections.

It seems to me that social media is often viewed in he wrong way. People often consider that technology is causing people to become less social and live their lives online but the more I use social centric technology the more I realise that this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Has technology helped you to be more social recently?

Categories: Apps, Social, Technology | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Are you ready to “vine”

We all live in the age of social media and I’ve adopted pretty much everything going. I remember doing my a-levels and MySpace was the big thing. My space was founded in 2003 and I loved it. At the same time we had other sites such as Bebo which although I had an account never really “took off” – at least not in my world.

MySpace was the first site that I actively communicated with my friends via an online medium – but when I took my gap year back in 2004 I didn’t consider using it as a way to keep in touch with people. It was more about bands and music – it wasn’t what I would consider social.

Then in 2007 something happened that revolutionised online socialising – I found Facebook! It was new, innovative and different and for the firs 18 months I was logged on 24/7 finding friends and updating my status every 5 minutes. It was cool and everyone was doing it!

It took me a little while to find Twitter and get to grips with it; but like FaceBook it did change the way I communicated online. When I connected FaceBook to Twitter I felt like my online life was complete.

Now there have been copy cats, I’m not a fan of Google plus and I don’t buy into these websites that are trying to be “FaceBook” but I am ready for more innovation.

In recent months Pinterest has caught my attention and in some ways I’m finding that I use this more than FaceBook especially in a work context. It feels creative and I like that. A couple of weeks ago I found myself on Pinterest and I came across a link to “vine” which was founded in June 2012 and has recently been bought by Twitter. Vine allows users to create 6 second video clips that loop and then embed in them in social networking sites such as Pinterest, FaceBook and Twitter.

My question is given all of the other social networking sites out there, and the fact that I already spend so much time sharing my life online – is there room for a service such as vine? Or could Vine actually change the way I use Pinterest in the same way that Twitter changed the way I use FaceBook.

One thing is for certain any good social networking site needs a verb to describe the activity. I currently Tweet on Twitter, Pin on Pinterest , Share or Like on FaceBook …… How will we describe “To Vine” if it does indeed become the new “in way” to communicate. Any Ideas?

Categories: Social, Technology | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Future and Social Networks

Social networking is an interesting concept in todays society – I guess like most people who use the internet it’s become part of my everyday life. The question i’ve been asking myself recently though is why? It seems that once everyone you know is a friend on facebook it somehow looses it’s appeal – anyone else with me on that?

In the early days part of the fun was finding people who you knew or had known in the past. Now that this novelty has worn off is there a point to FaceBook? I certainly don’t update my status 20 times a day like I did when the site was first launched.

Part of the problem with social networking is that brands like FaceBook and Twitter seem to own the concept. I said FaceBook and Twitter as though this were the only form of social networking – and to many this really is the case. Most people have heard of those brands and have an account on those websites ….. how many other networks do you regularly use? Are you part of the “technorati” for example? Has “pinterest” grabbed your attention? is there room for another brand or is the market now saturated? Is it even possible that people are starting to get board of the concept and look for the next new thing?

It seems to me that the primary function of social networking is marketing and in my view this will be short lived as internet users will begin to turn their back on brands such as FaceBook as the appeal starts to wear off and they slowly become desensitised to the promotional adverts. The idea of sponsored stories which is currently common place on FaceBook is certainly clever but do people want to use a website that consistently asks them to engage with and “like” new things?

In many ways the social networking boom could be compared with the .com boom in the late 1990’s; the .com bubble eventually burst and maybe this will also be true of the social networking phenomenon. I’m not sure if the recent FaceBook stock market floatation can be seen as a true indicator of the future for social networks but it certainly does make you wonder if social media has peaked – controversial? Let me know your views.

Categories: Social, Technology | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

How “social” is “social media”?

It occurs to me that the world seems to have become obsessed with “Social Media” – but what does the term actually mean?

Websites like FaceBook and Twitter seem to have coined the term for themselves in such a way that the brands are used almost interchangeably when discussing social media but the idea of media being social isn’t a new concept.

If I read an article on a website or in a newspaper that interests me then at some stage I will bring it up in conversation and i’ll discuss it with friends. Traditional media in this context is social and arguably more social that FaceBook and Twitter because it generally necessitates an actual social interaction in the real world.

This had led me to question how “social” is “social media”?  What are your thoughts?

 

Categories: Social, Technology | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

Re-Revolution

Einstein's Big IdeaaSo this is the first blog post of the all new, revolutionised, WestgarthsWeb. I’ve attempted blogging a number of times in the past and have failed miserably predominantly because i’ve never given the blog a focus. I’ve simply dipped in and out of whatever I might be vaguely interested in at the time.

Well this time WestgarthsWeb is different; the concept of the site has undergone a revolution! WestgarthsWeb is now all about what i’m interested in most in the world, and, put simply that’s technology, and more importantly how technology fits into everyday life. I’ve always been fascinated by how technology is able to site at the intersection of “techie” and useful; it’s the point that Technology meets Social and impacts upon our identity; in my view it is this that causes some great ideas take off and often causes even greater ideas to fail.

We’re back to that concept of how to start a revolution ….. Consider for a moment those people in history that you would consider revolutionary. Perhaps you considered ancient philosophers – Plato, Aristotle, Pythagoras? Or maybe you thought of scientists of more modern times, Einstein, Galileo or Darwin. No matter who you have chosen I would consider it a fairly safe bet that the people on your list devoted their life’s work to creating whatever mark they left on history.

So now to consider a modern revolution. Surely the word revolution means the same though? Be it modern or historic. Google ….. Define: Revolution ….. “A forcible overthrow of a government or social order for a new system.” I’m sure we would all agree that the development and growth of the internet fits this definition. What is perhaps extraordinary is that internet revolution is providing a platform for the revolution to be re-imagined, re-invented and consequently revolutionised. A good example of this is the explosion of “Social Media” over the last 10 years; arguably this has revolutionised the internet. In this context the idea of revolution certainly isn’t new; what is perhaps new is the speed with which the “internet revolution” has been “re-revolutionised”.

Back in the year 2000 internet penetration in the UK was around 26%, by the end of 2010 that figure had doubled to 52% (http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats.htm). When you consider revolution you expect change, but in history it is questionable whether anything ever changed the world so radically. To put this in context we are talking change in a 20 year period that has impacted more than 2,000,000,000 people or more accurately 1/3 of the worlds population. Revolution on this scale is much bigger than the English Civil War, arguably bigger than both the first and second world wars and has effected more people than were part of the British Empire. Am I exaggerating? I guess that’s a judgement that you need to make ….. but consider this …..

Virtually every new website changes something about the way we interact with the world around us. The internet “revolution” is not a one off event. It’s a revolution that keeps on giving “re-revolution”. Some of these mini revolutions have bean hugely publicised and attracted huge amounts of media attention, you only have to think of Google, FaceBook, and Twitter to see how mere mortals have created things for society and left an impact that has literally defined modern history.

In years to come it will be interesting to see if the impact of the likes of Google’s founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin will be immortalised alongside great inventors like Einstein; but you have to admit that the impact of revolutionaries such as these individuals has been great.

To my mind this is the power of the internet …. once inventors required huge amounts of money, state backing, and years, often lifetimes of painstaking hard work. In this day and age it is possible to create a revolution that has great impact from your back bedroom; or as Zukerberg demonstrated from a dorm room at Harvard. The internet has made it possible for anyone to literally change the world on the back of new, often incredibly simple idea …..

This, however, in my view is the key – in order to change the world the masses have to like to your idea; it is at this point that Technology meets Social and it is this concept that is the new focus of WestgarthsWeb.

So over the coming weeks and months expect posts about new ideas, technologies and things that I find interesting and that I believe have the power to change the world. Maybe along this journey some of you will get in touch, drop me an e-mail and let me know about how technology has impacted upon your everyday life.

My aspiration is that in years to come I can read back over these posts and track the development of a revolution that to my mind is only just beginning, a revolution that that I believe will keep on re-revolutionising for years to come.

Categories: Invention, Social, Technology | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.