Decision + Research

After much deliberation, I decided to focus on topic 4 “Compare and contrast how two different communities or social groups use a specific social media platform. Which of the two groups has more to gain and why?” 


Firstly, I want to discuss about Social Media since it is one of the key ideas in this topic. According to techopedia.com, it defines social media as computer-mediated technologies that allow the creating and sharing of information, ideas, career interests and other form of expression via virtual communities and networks. Example of social media platform can be access by everyone such as Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Google, Instagram.  Most Internet users have been registered on different social media platforms. According to Pew Research Center, there is 72% of online user use social networks. They might choose different social media platform based on their age, location, interesting, aims and many other reasons. 


For instances,

Tumblr: Millennials (c. 1980-1995), users under age of 35. 

Twitter: Young people, users age between 18-29.

Facebook: Mother of all social network.

(Popular Social Media Site)

In this day and age, social media keep getting more and more, and without end. It penetrates worldwide and become people’s daily routine. This bar chart shows the number of global social media users from 2010 to 2016 and estimate until 2020. In the coming 2018, it shows that there will be around 2.67 billion social media users, which increase from 1.91 billion in 2014. As the number of social media users increase, it also prove that more and more people rely heavily on internet to get news and information. They found that social media especially useful, since they are able to follow news shared by people in their networks.


Here is an example which shows people commonly spread or receive latest public information on social media. Let’s throwback to May 12, 2008, one of the world disasters happened in China Sichuan. There was an terrible earthquake with 7.9 magnitude and resulted over 67,000 people die and hundreds of thousands people injured during the disaster. At the moment, people started texting from their phone. They took photos of buildings, and also recording videos of building shaking. Afterwards, they uploaded them to QQ (China’s largest instant Messaging & Internet service) and also twittering it. Twitter seems like the most useful source to share the situation at the time. Many of them wrote about difficulties connecting to those people at the quake zone via telephone but internet seems able to be functioning. 

Translated: Sounds like CDMA and local network phones are working in the Sichuan area. 

People twittering earthquake situation in Sichuan. 

People all around the world catch up latest updates from Twitter. Even BBC News got their first update of China Sichuan earthquake from Twitter. Hence, this incident proves that people get news updates from social media even faster than news companies, newspapers and other original methods of spreading news can do. For another instance, President Barack Obama had joined social media platform such as Twitter. In social media, he used to spread news about what he had been done in White House and share about his daily life photos. A step faster than paparazzi or news cameras catch photos of him. 

President Barack Obama on Twitter.

All photos posted by Barack Obama on Twitter. 

This is a list of the leading social networks based on number of active user accounts as of September 2016. 

  1. Facebook: 1,712,000,000 users.
  2. WhatsApp 1,000,000,000 users.
  3. Facebook Messenger: 1,000,000,000 users.
  4. QQ: 899,000,000 users.
  5. WeChat: 806,000,000 users.
  6. QZone: 652,000,000 users.
  7. Tumblr: 555,000,000 users.
  8. Instagram: 500,000,000 users.
  9. Twitter: 313,000,000 users.
  10. Baidu Tieba: 300,000,000 users.
  11. Skype: 300,000,000 users.
  12. Sina Weibo: 282,000,000 users.
  13. Viber: 249,000,000 users.
  14. Line: 218,000,000 users.
  15. Snapchat: 200,000,000 users.

References

Statista (2016) Number of global social media users 2010-2020 [Online]. Available at: https://www.statista.com/statistics/278414/number-of-worldwide-social-network-users/ [Accessed at: 26th November 2016]

Techopedia (n.d) Social Platform [Online]. Available at: https://www.techopedia.com/definition/23759/social-platform [Accessed at: 26th November 2016] 

Duggan, M & Smith, A. (2013) Social Media Update 2013. Pew Research Center [Online]. Available at: http://www.pewinternet.org/2013/12/30/social-media-update-2013/ %5BAccessed at: 26th November 2016] 

Kennedy, J. (2008) China: 7.8 scale earthquake felt across most of China. Global Voices [Online]. Available at: https://globalvoices.org/2008/05/12/china-78-scale-earthquake-felt-across-most-of-china/ [Accessed at: 20th November 2016] 

Obama, B. (2016) Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there. Twitter [Online]. Available at: https://twitter.com/BarackObama/status/744572774400692224 [Accessed at 20th November 2016]

Obama, B. (2016) Side-by-side for 24 years. Here’s to many more. #HappyAnniversary. Twitter [Online]. Available at: https://twitter.com/BarackObama/status/783009809356304385 [Accessed at: 20th November 2016]

Obama, B. (2016) Lions and Tiggers and bears! Oh my! #HappyHalloween 

Twitter [Online]. Available at: https://twitter.com/BarackObama/status/793213251077103617 [Accessed at: 20th November 2016]








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