The emergence of online communication has introduced significant shifts to social perception of communication and media. New channels of cooperation and coordination, as well as possibility to be in touch with people all over the world, have created a new sphere of social interaction.
The popularity of such social networks as Facebook and Twitter expands the possibility to share and exchange useful information at distance. It also allows to settle problems of various character, including business conferences. At the same time, spread of online communication and social networking has given rise to cyber crimes and many other problems. Therefore, social networking has both advantages and disadvantages for the world community which will be considered in detail.
There are a great number of advantages that social networking can offer to their users. First of all, online communities provide users with a possibility to create chat rooms so as to find friends with similar preferences, hobbies, and interests. Constant exchange of knowledge and information allows online users to expand their outlooks on cultural, social, and political issues, as well as shape opinions on a specific problem (Shelly and Misty 202).
Second, social networking offers a function of web conferences, which are much more beneficial than a telephone call. Thus, the participants can interact with each other, exchange specific details of the conferences, including power point presentations (Shelly and Misty 202). Establishing web conferences is beneficial because the participants can communicate regardless the distance. Third, social networking effectively provides communication channels which allows a participant to achieve goals sitting in front of a computer.
An obvious advantage of social networking is strongly associated with improvement in educational sphere. In particular, online learners have opened great opportunities to study online and improve their skills by communicating distantly with peers and teachers (Kear 176). Thus, using ICQ and Skype for learning can increase students’ productivity and involve more learners into studying various academic disciplines (Kear 176). Online learning both increases learners’ involvement and contributes to flexibility of an academic process, which is impossible while learning in a traditional school.
Despite the above-enumerated disadvantages, social networking mechanisms have certain shortcomings. In particular, submitting and exchanging information via virtual devices is often a serious challenge in case this information should not be given to publicity (Shelly and Misty 202). Authenticity and copyright rights are under the threat because information is transferred online. In addition, being addicted to online chart can deprive people of the ability to communicate directly with people.
As a result, there is a potential risk to lose interpersonal communication skills, which can be have negative impact on mental health of individuals. Finally, while communicating online, there is a possibility of misunderstanding because people sometimes cannot reach a consensus. Therefore, in such situations, face-to-face communication is the best solution.
In conclusion, social networking is both good and bad, depending on the purposes and attitudes of people to online communicating. To begin with, social networking increases the chances to communicate with people all over the world. It also contributes to the expansion of cultural, social, and political experiences.
However, social networking can have negative consequences for people who abuse virtual space for such purposes as inappropriate use of information and interference with personal space. Overall, the emergence of social networking is beneficial for developing new skills of communicating in the global community.
Kear, Karen. Online and Social Networking Communities: A Best Practice Guide for Educators. US: Taylor & Francis, 2010. Print.
Shelly, Gary. B. and Misty E. Vermaat, (2010). Discovering Computers 2011: Brief. US: Cengage Learning, 2010. Print.