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Households and Businesses: The Influence of Social Media

Over the last several decades, the world has been experiencing a lot of advancement in the field of information and technology (Randall, 2011). These developments have changed the manner in which individuals and businesses interact with each other. For instance, Web 2.0 has played a significant role in the introduction and growth of social network sites. In the contemporary world, social media has developed to become the most widely used platform that people and businesses utilize to create personal content and share it with the rest of the world (Harrison, 2012). Mainly, this content is in the form of texts, pictures, and videos. Due to its frequency of application, its high speed, and its wide outreach, social media plays a significant role in determining the trends and events that are taking place in the society. As Jansen (2009) asserted, the discourse of social media is significant in the contemporary world since its effects can be felt in almost every realm of our lives. This ranges from environmental issues to politics. However, the impacts of social media are mainly felt in the field of enterprise management and entertainment.

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Unlike Web 1.0 that required the user to possess technical skills to navigate through the system, the interface of Web 2.0 has been designed to be user friendly. The users only need to have basic computer skills to be able to navigate through the system. It is due to this fact that the usage of the internet grew at a tremendous rate during the era of Web 2.0 (Khare, 2012). Web 2.0 also played a critical role in enhancing the use of images in the internet. To further enhance the user experience, this paradigm made it possible for users to include accompanying texts that describe the image. Furthermore, it is through Web 2.0 that individuals started to enjoy the use of interactive applications across the internet (Enser, 2011; Djeraba, 2009). It is from these basics that the concept of social networking is based upon. Social network sites highly utilize images and videos as a means of enabling their users to develop their profiles and share it with the rest of the world. Given the extent and reach of the internet and social media, this platform has created an effective and efficient system though which individuals and businesses can virtually interact with each other.

However, there are ongoing developments in the field of information technology that are expected to change the manner in which individuals and businesses interact with each other via the internet. Web 2.0 was successful in enabling individuals to virtually interact with one another. However, the emergence of a new paradigm, Web 3.0, is expected to completely change the online experience that individuals and businesses will have (Harrison, 2012). Despite the fact that the web technologies that will be incorporated under Web 3.0 are not clearly defined, it is evident that this advancement will take social networking to a whole new level. One of the advancements that Web 3.0 will definitely have is semantics (Khare, 2012). This advancement will enable the users to have access to specific information that they require during the precise time that they require it (Khare, 2012). Consequently, Web 3.0 will further develop the application of 3 dimension technology over the internet.

Currently, there are social network sites such as Second Life and IMVU that offer their users a 3 dimensional experience (Silva et al., 2011). Given the limited nature of Web 2.0, this experience is limited in the sense it cannot fully handle the demands of 3 dimension technology. However, it is expected that due to its superiority, Web 3.0 will overcome this challenge. Through this paradigm, users are expected to enjoy their experiences on virtual environments. Given the capabilities of Web 3.0, it is expected that users will have an experience that arise from virtual environments that is much better as compared to the real life (Jure, 2012). Thus, Web 3.0 is expected to enhance the traditional 3 dimensional experience that individuals had through Web 2.0 by incorporating advanced features such as the sense of touch that will enable the users not only to view the virtual world but also to manipulate this environment to meet their tastes and preferences. Consequently, Web 3.0 will further enhance the user experience by enabling them to express emotions such as feelings and affection. It is believed that the users will be able to express these emotions through acts such as handshakes and hugs (Asur and Huberman, 2010; Bernardo and Huberman, 2009). This development will enhance the opportunities that individuals and users have through social virtual networks.

Aim of the Research

The aim of this study therefore is to examine the effects that social media will have on the lives of individuals and the operations of businesses across the Web 3.0 paradigm. To ensure that this goal is achieved in this study will answer the following research questions:

  1. How will social media through Web 3.0 affect the lives of individuals?
  2. What impacts will Web 3.0 and social media have on the operations of business entities in future?
  3. What impacts will social media have on the society in future?
  4. Will these developments in the internet and social media be sustainable?

Given the fact that this study aims at researching on the future aspects of the internet and social networking, the following factors might act as the limitation to this study:

  1. The time span for carrying the study is short and therefore the study may not capture the topic in detail.
  2. There could be little relevant secondary data to supplement the primary data.


To ensure that the research questions are fully answered, open ended interviews will be conducted. These interviews will target individuals (to answer the first research question) and business managers (to answer the second research question). To ensure that the views of individuals of different generations are captured, the target group of this study will range from 18-75 years. Random sampling techniques will be used to ensure that the data that will be collected will not be biased.

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Consequently, this study will also undertake a situation analysis exercise. This exercise will comprise three different data analysis methods. First, a PESTEL analysis will be conducted. The aim of this analysis will be to determine the political, economic, social, technological, and legal impacts that social media under the Web 3.0 paradigm will have on society. A SWOT analysis will also be conducted to determine the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats that social media will be facing in the future. Finally, a porter 5 forces analysis will be conducted to determine the entry and exit strategies that firms will be using under the Web 3.0 platform.


Asur, S. and Huberman, B. (2010). Predicting the Future With Social Media. ScienceDirect, 2(1), 15-31

Bernardo, A. and Huberman, B. (2009). Social Networks that Matter: Twitter under the Microscope. First Monday, 14(1), 44-53

Djeraba, C. (2009), Content-Based Multimedia Indexing and Retrieval. Multimedia, IEEE, 9(2), 18-30

Enser, P. (2011). Visual Image Retrieval. Journal of Information Science and Technology, 42(1), 42-50.

Harrison, C. (2012). Describing Images on the Web: A Survey of Current Practice and Prospects for the Future. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 4(1), 122-130.

Jansen, B. (2009). Social Network Power: Tweets as Electronic Word of Mouth. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 4(1), 45-59.

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Jure, L. (2012). The Dynamics of Viral marketing. Electronic Commerce, 2(2) 122-140

Khare, R. (2012). Microformats: The Next (small) thing on the Semantic Web. Internet Computing, IEEE , 10(1), 68-75

Randall, D. (2011). The Digital Dilemma. ACM, 44(2), 77-83,

Silva, J., Rahman, A. and Saddik, A. (2011). Web 3.0: A Vision for Bridging the Gap between Real and Virtual. Journal of Consumer Science, 2(1), 9-14

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