This study was really about the question whether facebook and myspace replaced face to face interaction. Apparently conflicting results were reported. This study used a survey to examine the use of facebook and myspace among 183 college students an it confirmed that the use of these social media acted as an extension instead of a replacement of face to face interaction. Nevertheless some users relied on facebook and mysoace as the most important form of social interaction more than on face to face interaction.
But what was more interesting were the results on how these college students used facebook and myspace. Most of all, the result that 40% reported having no friends on facebook and myspace that they have never met in person and those who did have friends on faceboook whom they never had met reported having an average of 7.2 such friends. Amazing. I’ve a lot of friends I’ve never met. College students that much different from adults?
A total of 8% (n¼14) of the respondents reported having frequently used Facebook and/ or MySpace to meet new people that they have never met before, while 75% (n¼132) reported frequently using it to keep in touch with people whom they already knew
More interesting results
52% used both facebook and myspace
the students used facebook on average 1.2 times per day, spending on average 31.5 minutes each time they use it
for myspace an average usage of 1.6 times per day, spending an avergae of 38.8 minutes for each use
The younger generation especially students use social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace a lot. The use of these sites also has their dangers and problems as mostly described in newspapers and magazines.
Newspapers and magazines related to higher education are replete with cases of college students who experienced negative repercussions from questionable activities that were made public online
Questionable activities such as racially insensitive remarks, alcohol and dug violations, illegally storming a football field. Repercussions such as expelled from class, called before the dean of students.
But how do we help students to find the balance between free speech and responsibility, how can we educate them about this, prevent the possible negative effect of social networking on their future career?
Schools should take appropriate steps to educate students about these matters.
Research is needed on professional students’ usage and attitudes toward online social networking sites.
Monitoring and usage of these sites by institutions venture into legal grey areas
Should material found on student social networking sites should be used in colleges admissions decisions and/or matters of a disciplinary nature?
What do you think?
Cain J (2008). Online social networking issues within academia and pharmacy education. American journal of pharmaceutical education, 72 (1) PMID: 18322572
Researchers found evidence for a social capital divide on My Space based on age. They did a study of user profiles among teenagers and older users of MySpace. MySpace is one of many online social networking site, but one of the largest.
These are the age differences in online social networking between teenagers and older users of MySpace:
Teenagers tend to have more friends than older people on MySpace.
Most of the friends of teenage MySpace users were of a similar age (±2 years), whereas older MySpace users tend to have friends from age groups outside their own age.
Younger people have larger social networks
Older people have access to a more diverse network compared to teenagers
Teenagers’ social capital on MySpace consists of many weak and strong ties to peers that they know from offline activities
Older peoples’ social capital, in contrast consists of less relations to a more diverse group of people
Teenagers connect to both close friends as well as loose acquaintances in MySpace
Older people tend to be more careful and selective when choosing their friends on MySpace and only want to add to their friends list people that they know very well
Teenagers make more use of different media (e.g. music and videos) on their profile pages when compared to older MySpace users.
Teenagers receive on average almost ten times as many comments as do older people
Both female teenagers and older women receive more comments than the male counterpart of their age group
Blogs on MySpace are much more used by teenagers compared to older people, and females are more likely to use blogs than males for both of the groups
Older people are more reluctant to make use of additional features, like music, videos and the exchange of comments.
Teens use more self-references, negative emotions and overall cognitive words than do older people
Teenagers use more self-references in their self-descriptions than older people
Older people use more articles and big words than teenagers.
Older people tend to represent themselves in a more formal and official way compared to teenagers.
Teenagers tend to not only write in a more informal way, but also focus more on themselves and their emotions when representing themselves
What is social capital?
Social capital is described as the resources that are created in social networks and relationships between people and that have a certain value or benefit for individuals participating in this network/relationships. Social capital is created through interactions with others, thus it belongs to a group of people and not to individuals.
Social capital theory distinguishes between two types of social capital: bridging social capital and bonding social capital (Putnam, 2000). Bridging social capital refers to loose connections between individuals. Often, people can provide each other with new information and input via these connections; however, they are not described as being very personal or emotional. ‘Weak ties” – connections that often exist in large quantities for a person but do not describe a very close relationship.
Bonding social capital, on the contrast, describes close relationships in which emotional support is exchanged. It describes the relationships we might have with very close friends or family members. Bonding social capital can be compared to ‘‘strong ties”.
What is social capital divide? Social Capital Divide To avoid a social capital divide it is crucial to ensure that Social Networking Sites are universally accessible and people of all ages can benefit from them. The importance of social capital lies in the benefit of social support and integration and social cohesion among people.
Why is this research important?
With this knowledge programmers and designers can adapt their social network sites so it will be used by teenagers and elderly. They can adapt it in a way that elderly as well as teenagers can easily access and use the site, so they can become true social network sites. Or should the social network sites be divided in sites for teenagers and others for the elderly? What do you think.
What did they do to investigate the social capital divide?
In order to investigate these issues, we collected a large number of profile pages from MySpace.com with the use of web crawlers we built. To identify age differences, we compared the behaviour and representation of two user groups in MySpace: teenagers (aged 13–19) and older people (aged 60+). In investigating these two groups, we can identify the unique behaviours of each of the two target populations as well as identify and analyse any age differences in their behaviour and in the way that they expand and maintain social capital in this setting.
Why should the elderly use Social Networking Sites?
Older people spend most of their online time communicating with others via email indicating
that social interaction is a prevalent activity of this target population in online environments.
The increased social interaction of older people in online environments has a positive effect on their perceived quality of life and well-being
It provides them with the possibility to both receive, but also give information and support to other people
Older people value having diverse relationships (with people from a variety of ages, locations, cultures, etc.) and reciprocate relationships in which the support is exchanged in both ways.
Older people are also to search for health information on the web and stay current with news and events
Older people perceive the exchange of experiences and support in online communities as very beneficial and valuable
The communication is in a written form as it gives them more time to construct and think about what they want to write more thoroughly.
U PFEIL, R ARJAN, P ZAPHIRIS (2008). Age differences in online social networking – A study of user profiles and the social capital divide among teenagers and older users in MySpace Computers in Human Behavior DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2008.08.015
Higher emotional intelligence discourages using MySpace for romance. Low self esteem encourages young adults in using MySpace for romance.
Romance being in this study: Romantic communication is conceptualized as looking for dates and building intimate relationships
MySpace users can create a homepage that includes favorite pictures, music, television shows, and books. MySpace has more than 100 million members, mostly teens and young adults. MySpace is a large online socialization network.
The sample under study consisted of 240 under graduate students who were a member of MySpace. The average age was 20, 81 were juniors, 76 were seniors, and the rest were freshmen and sophomores.
Several scales were used to measure self-esteem and emotional intelligence.
A Likert scale was used to measure romantic communication with seven statements, including “Most of my conversations on MySpace are intimate,” “I use MySpace to look for a romantic partner,” and “I would date someone I met on MySpace.”
Emotional intelligence (EI) is an individual’s ability to understand and regulate his or her emotional responses both internally and in others. Self-esteem is an individual’s perception of himself or herself.
This study focused only on looking for intimate partners and building intimate relationships. The sample size was small and consisted of American sholars, this limits the generalizability.
Qingwen Dong, Mark A. Urista, Duane Gundrum (2008). The Impact of Emotional Intelligence, Self-Esteem, and Self-Image on Romantic Communication over MySpace CyberPsychology & Behavior, 11 (5), 577-578 DOI: 10.1089/cpb.2007.0154
The researchers, whose results appear in the October issue of the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, gave personality questionnaires to nearly 130 Facebook users, analyzed the content of the pages and had untrained strangers view the pages and rate their impression of the owner’s narcissism. The researchers found that the number of Facebook friends and wallposts that individuals have on their profile pages correlates with narcissism.
The other results are from a study were they compared college students whether one’s sense of risk taking is related to use of social networking websites. They also analyzed differences between men and women. They also compared two popular social networking websites: Facebook and MySpace regarding trust from it’s users.Lastly, they also compared men and women with regard to a number of behaviors relevant to privacy concerns that are done on social networking websites.
One of the great challenges of modern website design is balancing search engine optimization (SEO) with graphic design. SEO website design presents both opportunity and difficulty. Obviously, every website wants to rank well in search engine results pages (SERPs). At the same time, every webmaster wants a website that looks great and offers an excellent user experience. Bringing melbourne seo services and SERP optimization into line with a quality interface is the Holy Grail of web design.One of the easiest ways to make a well-designed website compatible with better SEO is to tighten up the website design. With fewer elements in a less complex layout, it becomes easier to focus a website design on the things that matter for SEO. DIV and H1 elements make a website more accessible for the bots that search engines use to index your website. If your site is able to play nice with Googlebot, the odds improve that your site will deliver better SERPs in Google.
Visually, this results in a simpler, less cluttered design. This also has the added benefit of making your website easier for users to scan and comprehend. Try to visualize some of the most successful websites out there. Think of what Google’s homepage looks like. Or think of how easy it is to scan down a Twitter feed. This is the type of tight design a good website should aspire to achieve. A site should be complex enough to serve its purpose, but sparse enough to not confuse its purpose.
Participants were 205 students from a 4-year undergraduate commuter inner city college.
We have to learn these young adults how to protect their privacy and the risks by disclosing their address and telephone numbers. Especially since this research shows that those young adults disclosing all this information are greater risk takers. They are prone to ill judgment.
Or to phrase Sgt. Phil Esterhaus from Hill Street Blues: Let’s…..Be Careful Out There.
They are taking a great risk by disclosing the information so I agree with the conclusion of the researchers:
Based upon our results, we recommend that health care professionals, psychologists, communication professionals, and consumer advocacy groups advocate that sponsoring companies of social networking websites mention that risk taking behavior and privacy concerns are potentially relevant and important concerns at the sign-up period before individuals are allowed to create a social networking profile.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments.
J FOGEL, E NEHMAD (2008). Internet social network communities: Risk taking, trust, and privacy concerns Computers in Human Behavior DOI: 10.1016/j.chb.2008.08.006