Sunday, December 1, 2013

5 Things I've noticed about... Social Media

Social media is probably one of the greatest inventions of the computer age.

It allows people from all over the world to interact with other people that under normal circumstances they would never have had a chance to interact with, and it has become an outlet for many to express either their thoughts or emotions.

Now there are a lot of things that I have noticed about social media (trust me, it's a lot) but I have narrowed to five different things.

So here are five things I've noticed about social media:

5. It's basically blogging.

Probably one of the biggest things that I really have noticed about social media that a lot of people probably overlook (mostly because they don't have a real blog site) is that everything that I can do on social media I can basically do on here. From posting photos and videos, to writing up long, drawn out rants that I hope people would read first in it's entirety before commenting on it, I can just as easily do here as I can on Facebook (only I can be a little more creative here with my posts).

I guess you could say that blogs (especially those that you can comment on and interact with the author) are the first types of social media. Infact some websites that are considered by many to be social media websites are actually blogs. Probably one of the best examples of this is Twitter which many people regard as one of the largest social media websites in the world. Infact it's actually a mirco-blog website in which many people express their thoughts on... 140 characters at a time.

4. They always change stuff.

Probably one of the biggest complaints about social media websites is that every once in a while they will change something about it that some people will complain about, regardless if the change is a good or a bad thing.

Many times these changes are minor, and are often times not that noticeable, and is really nothing to get in an uproar about, but sometimes the changes are major (like a complete redesign of the whole layout of the site's pages) and is something that no one has any say in whether or not they want to keep the old style that they have gotten use to and have modified to their liking.

3. They have a weird way of enforcing they TOS agreements.

Whats easier to get removed from a social media website? A picture that a model has uploaded of themselves in a skimpy bikini that doesn't actually violate the site's TOS agreement, and might be being used for legitimate business purposes, or a rant about Jews that clearly violates that website's rules about hate speech?

If you answered the picture of a model in the skimpy bikini, then you answered correctly.

The fact is that social media websites are probably far more likely to remove content from a user, or punish that user in some other way, for content that would only be offensive only to the most uptight or jealous of individuals and doesn't actually violate the TOS agreement, and doesn't hurt anyone, rather than remove content from someone whom post harmful and/or bigoted content that really does violate the TOS agreement of the website, and could incite a person to commit violence or do something else that is harmful.

Because of social media websites seeming unwillingness to remove content that really is or could be considered harmful or bigoted, and because it's just so easy to create a new account incase a person is kicked off of a social media website...

2. It has become a haven for whack jobs.

Social media is a great place to interact with like minded people who share the same or similar interests as you do. If I want to join a group for Walking Dead fans that's no problem because there are several of them on Facebook. Or if I want to join a group for skeptics, no problem there either. If I want to join a group that promotes conspiracy theories, or alternative medicine, that unfortunately is also no problem because there are a lot of groups like that on Facebook alone.

The fact is that social media has attracted a lot of people who believe in either really strange and/or possibly harmful stuff (i.e. conspiracy theorists, pushers of alternative medicine, bigots) mainly because it's both far easier and cheaper (most often times free) to set up a page on a social media website than it is to completely create your own website. You also have a better chance of reaching more people as well.

Now of all of the different types whack jobs on social media, there is one type of whack job that truly loves it, because...

1. It's become a paradise for stalkers.

Back in the pre-social media days if you wanted to stalk someone you really had to put some effort into it. Now many stalkers don't have to do much of anything inorder to stalk someone. All they have to do is check their victim's social media page and know where they're going or where they are at and really don't have to do much if any investigating inorder to do their stalking. Heck some stalkers don't even do that and stalk people exclusively online.

Social media is such a time saver for stalkers that if they are psychologically capable of it they can actually have a social life while screwing with someone else's life...

All joking aside, stalking is a big problem on social media, and while it is partially because some people put out more information about themselves then what they really should be putting on the internet, the main reason why stalking is such a big problem on social media is because people who stalk via social media do it because it is easy, and because they believe they can get away with it, which is not always the case. Infact some people might stalk a person over the internet and not even realize it. Also many people might get stalked on social media and not even know it.

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