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Title: Web Mediated Communications – Positive and Negative Effects
Authors: Karimi, Ali
Department: Högskolan i Borås/Institutionen Handels- och IT-högskolan
Issue Date: 15-Oct-2013
Series/Report no.: Magisteruppsats
Programme: Magisterutbildning i informatik
Publisher: University of Borås/School of Business and IT
Media type: text
Keywords: Web Mediated Communications
Social Media
Virtual Communities
Positive Effects
Negative Effects
Abstract: Web mediated communications revolutionized traditional social interactions. It is designed to facilitate information exchange between individuals and to enable people to connect with friends, family, classmates etc. virtually. By the formation of virtual communities, “web mediated communication” is defined as a wider concept known as “social media”. Social media enhances the volume of communications and interpersonal interactions based on the power of web 2.0 technology. People join to the virtual communities of online social networks to procure information from everywhere, share ideas, experiences, photos, videos and memorable moments while extending friendships beyond the geographical and cultural borders. The emergence and fast growth of social media among people added value to the web activities and convinced web masters to integrate web services such as e-mail, chat, discussion rooms, forums and third party applications to the social media web sites. Many of social media web sites are hosting millions of members, equipping their web sites with communication tools, sharing options, dynamic content creation and collaborative authoring facilities which never experienced before. Facebook, Twitter and GooglePlus are examples of most known social media web sites which gained popularity among people so fast. Social media helps people to make new friends, find lost friends and old classmates while providing an opportunity to build new friendships. This new communication technology empowers people to collaborate in authoring of the web content and causes the information sharing synergy. Such positive aspects are enough for people to ignore the consequences of joining social media. Despite the rise of friendships in number, the physical encounters are substituted by virtual ones which causes weak friendship ties. In addition, social media platforms promise the security and privacy of users, but issues such as identity theft and worm attacks threaten users' privacy and security. Social media is in its infancy, adopted among people for less than a decade whereas a lack of research in this field is evident. The author of this thesis aimed at filling this gap by investigating the positive and negative effects of using social media through collecting the users' experiences and professionals' viewpoints. Theoretical study primarily illuminated the main positive and negative aspects while the findings of empirical research verified by theoretical study identified other practical effects and aspects of social media.
Appears in Collections:Magisteruppsatser (Informatics)

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