New Technology: Social Media - Research Paper Example

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This essay demonstrated that social media has had positive implications for previously disenfranchised groups, and also functionally contributed to business relations. Ultimately, it’s clear that social media constitutes one of the most significant new technologies…
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Download file to see previous pages The paper tells that while the Internet drastically changed the ways people interact with computer technology, recent developments in social networking have correspondingly had a profound impact on social relations. Indeed, of new technological advancements within the Digital Age, it’s difficult to identify a technology that has had a more profound and significant influence on modern society. While slightly abstract in nature, social media is understood to encompass web-based and mobile technologies that are implemented to turn communication into an interactive dialogue. Even while this technology has had s significant unifying effect, individuals have also argued that such technology has been detrimental for the modern world. One of the most pervasive ways the social web has impacted the ways people interact is through applications such as Facebook that allow individuals to ‘friend’ each other. Even as many bemoan the loss of true social relations because of the intrusion of the Internet, in these regards it’s clear that the social web has also expanded social interaction. Perhaps the most overarching sociological approach to this aspect of the technology is the interactionist perspective. This perspective contends that human relations must be examined within the prism of the everyday forms of social interaction as they apply to the whole of social organization. Within social media one recognizes that this new technology has greatly re-shaped the very interaction of daily experiences. In many regards, such an impact on society can be understood to have positive connotations. While previously individuals remained in contact with their neighbors, and individuals in their immediate daily lives, social media has expanded this environment, such that individuals now associate daily with people from all eras of their life. It’s noted that this, “technological platform has greatly contributed to the expansion of means of interaction, in both personal and professional contexts, expanding the very nature of social interaction” (Baralt, p. 207). Indeed, such a change can be argued to enrich the daily lives of humanity, as they are now able to view how people change over time, and expand their network of people they can go to for advice or support. As it has been a long-standing tenant of mental well being to have strong social relationships, this technology can be argued to greatly contribute to the betterment of society. Of course, the converse argument is that while social media has allowed individuals to remain in contact with each other over long-distances and extended time periods, it has compromised social relations in other regards. This perspective contends that the infusion of this technology into humanity’s daily lives has created a world where face-to-face communication is now mediated by computers. One considers Plato’s ‘Allegory of the Cave’ wherein prisoners only witness shadows on a wall, rather than truly grasping the reality of existence. Within this context of understanding, it’s noted that while social media has contributed to cooperative environments, it has also, “established an increased atmosphere of anxiety and hindered participation, as individuals struggle to achieve the same forms of mental connection that were part of earlier social connection” (Siegel, p. 1810). Ultimately, it’s clear that such considerations provide a powerful counterpoint to the positive social benefits of this technology. While the interactionist perspective demonstrates both positive and negative sociological aspects of social media on the daily lives of humanity, the conflict perspective reveals further highly notable elements surrounding this technological advancement. Arguing that social relations are best understood as tensions between groups, one recognizes that social media has had a significant impact on the modern world in these ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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