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Virtual communities - Article Example

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Long gone is the time when communication was only limited to geographical and political boundaries, or when merely one-to-one communication was possible on the telephone across borders. Virtual communities take communication beyond these levels to computer-mediated or online…
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Virtual communities
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Virtual communities

Download file to see previous pages... t block or the other side of planet of any individual who is a part of a computer-mediated social group, as well as the potential benefits for personal or societal wellbeing of belonging to such communities.
From virtual discussion blogs, networking communities and play-station networks to virtual shops, jobs, and even virtual classrooms, this widespread medium is phenomenal for bringing about such a greater sense of community. This concept/term has become so pervasive in its use that there is a propensity to blend all social activity into a sole concept and disregard the diversity of virtual frameworks (Renninger 2002, p.293). The World Wide Web has made it simpler for individuals to form virtual communities. Geographically dispersed, these communities are used for multiple social and professional groups to hold discussions, share activities, and build strong ties among members; they have become central to motivating people to get wired.
There are many examples of virtual communities that serve different purposes and target different segments. For instance, for independent contractors and consultants, About.com is a key example of a virtual community that can be utilized to assist a distributed workforce. This community provides discussion platforms, online training, and other resource areas for assistance. Moreover, another example of a virtual community is BlackPlanet.com, which specifically caters to the African American society. It allows the Black minority to interact, by offering email, free personal pages, chat rooms, forums, news, instant messaging, and Internet telephony, as well as online events and special promotions. Furthermore, this community features online channels which cover a variety of topics, like career, health, money, politics, news, music, beauty, love, sex, and spirituality etc.; it also has a ‘Black Expressions’ book club (McKay 2000, p.157).
Virtual communities go far and beyond to cover all segments, for example, for gaming and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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