Social Network And Friendship Research Paper Sample
Nowadays we are entering the global age with global financial system, global flows of people, global sourcing of food. The development of information technology has become a key point of the XXI century. Everyone can see drastic changes in the structure of society under the influence of the Internet that has become one of the biggest interests among scientists. They try to examine the Internet influence on modern youth and to determinate its place in the process of communication. The reason for this is the ambiguous impact of the Internet on people and society that leads to the appearance of both negative and positive consequences. Nowadays the phenomenon of Internet addiction is a subject of sociologists’ constant debates (“How Social Networking Changes Friendship?”).
Reasons for resorting to the Internet as a tool of communication can be:
1. Lack of communication in real life. In such cases users will quickly lose interest in online communication, if there are opportunities to meet in real life.
2. Ability to implement personal traits, playing roles, experience of emotions in real life. The desire to experience various emotions lead to emotional content.
Today people spend a lot of time on the Internet, forgetting about their responsibilities, concerns and the real problems. Especially children are computer addicted and it becomes more and more dangerous with every coming day. The unlimited use of computers and the Internet has become the plague of XXI century. A large amount of time spent at the computer monitor leads to excessive visual load and as a result to the development of myopia. Also, there are problems with digestion, headaches, disturbed concentration. Basically sites show bright graphic ads that attract the attention of any person, even with iron psyche. As a result, attention is becoming more diffuse than it was before. The most dangerous consequences are limited emotional contact and the loss of communication with family and friends in real life, which leads to a number of psychological problems (“How Strongly Can Social Media Influence and Control People’s Lives?”).
It’s highly important to remember that the information in social networks is absorbing fast, spontaneously and in small portions. The brain gets used to this kind of work with the information and gradually loses its ability to hold the attention for a long time on something. It leads to hyperactive disorder. This side effect is generated by the philosophy of integration of information when you work with a single web interface and combine many functions such as communication, listening to music, discussion meetings. It has a bad effect on the ability of our thinking. It becomes difficult to hold the attention for a long time, such as reading a book. Our mind, following the acquired habit, begins to jump from one subject to another. Therefore, there are difficulties in order to think over one problem so your attention constantly "floats." Social networks can be turned into a kind of gum for the brain. We get used to constant getting some information and we can begin to experience breaking information. It is expressed in the fact that it becomes difficult to relax in those situations when the brain receives enough data, for example, when we go on the subway. Our brain starts to require new pieces of quick information and used to get it out of daily social networking. However working in a steady stream of information makes the brain tired and the body is under stress. When you spend a lot of time sitting in social networks, your brain are busy with meaningless and purposeless activity which can’t be called a full-fledged intellectual work. In social networks you are busy all the time without thinking about the quality of the information received. Instead, you have no idea to solve problems in life, to make plans for the future, to come up with some useful idea, to read a good book. But all these plans are not possible as long as your mind is puzzled with chewing gum online, turning you into mindless zombies and alienated. The point is that information is delivered rapidly and continuously, and you do not have time to digest, think about it. Emotions are not developed in response to coming information. You don’t admit what you like most, as you hurry to swallow everything as quickly as possible and do not have time to form an estimate, a certain emotional response. Empathy, commitment and enthusiasm disappear, with no time to take shape in your mind. These symptoms may be as a result of excessive enthusiasm for computer games and the Internet in general, and a consequence of the many manifestations of modern life: hard work, the rapid pace of life, random information consumption, boredom.
Despite the range of negative influence the Internet has a positive impact. The main key to success is to use it wisely and to know the limit, as in many other things. Nothing wrong is in meeting people with the same interests, find old friends and rehabilitating past. People got a great opportunity to communicate with friends, to listen to music (and find it) and to watch movies. Social networks have a number of useful features that really make life easier, faster and more convenient. This is a great technological and cultural breakthrough in the development of the technologies. Social networks allow you to view files, videos and photos of other users, comments, exchange messages. It helps to relax, to get the most out of virtual communication, to cheer yourself up, or just to "kill time." Each user has its own purpose and motivation of the use of social networking. We shouldn’t forget that it contributes to both educational and intellectual development: there are a variety of websites for parents that contain valuable material for the education and training of children (educational online games, interactive books, drawing lessons, English language).
Many social scientists are considering Internet addiction in terms of its impact on the socialization of adolescents. Internet creates all conditions for the earlier involvement of the individual in social activities. Thanks to a computer everybody can participate in all spheres of society in any part of the Globe. But this phenomenon has a dual character because not all scientists agree that early involvement in all spheres of public life (political, economic and cultural) has a positive influence on the formation of personality. They noted that each stage of development should occur in a certain period. Sometimes the child is not actually ready for an adequate assessment of what is happening around him. A new culture appears within the Internet. Members are united with the same interests, views and outlooks, communicating and sharing information on forums and websites. Getting into such a community, the user acquires the status according to his demands and interests in this community. As a rule, people who have high status in real life, get it in virtual reality. However, there are exceptions when a user with a low status in reality gains respect and popularity in the Internet. Pavel Durov is a vivid example who created one of the most popular social networks "Vkontakte". It became very famous in Russia, Ukraine and abroad (“The Meaning of Friendship in a Social Networked World”).
We can highlight a number of the following characteristics of communication in the Internet. In the online communication non-verbal means of communication lose their meaning. Of course, there is a set of "emoticons" that expresses the range of emotions. However we have to admit that it is not equal to the real ones. In other words, a person can’t adequately assess the opponent because of his physical absence. Anonymity enables teenager to create a different way of life, much different from the real one. So the positive aspects include the expansion of the circle of communication, raising awareness in certain areas, as well as overcoming the communicative deficits.
When the psychological analysis of young people identified a number of characteristics common to many people suffering from Internet addiction. This term was first proposed by Dr. Ivan Goldberg in 1996 to describe the uncontrollable, painful thrust to the Internet. It is necessary to pay attention to several factors related to the disorder. First, the constant use of the computer leads to the stress of a person. It’s the important fact that computer addiction causes damage to the social, psychological, interpersonal status of a person. Finally, Internet addiction can cause psychopathology. The scientists proved that depression is often provoked by Internet addiction. Depressive patients who have difficulty in communicating or social adaptation, often resort to the help of the Internet to overcome the difficulties of interpersonal interaction in reality (“Social Media Tools”).
The scientists noted that the Internet as a means of "getting away" from reality offers the following features:
· The anonymous, social interaction;
· Possibility to create and implement fantasies (including the ability to create new images of the "I" that is impossible to implement in real life);
· Unrestricted access to information, "information vampirism" (the key point when people can live without the Internet and do not know how to build a relationship in real life);
· Extensive search capabilities of interlocutor based on a number of criteria that are often not possible in real life (it is important to note that there is no need to hold the attention of one companion, as you can communicate with several).
It’s worth noting that the Internet offers huge opportunities not only in communication but also in access to resources with information. One of the features of the Internet is the lack of limitations in obtaining any kind of information. However, uncontrolled access to Internet resources obtains serious potential danger to humans. In the global network we find a large amount of resources that demonstrate and promote various forms of violence, various methods of manipulation of consciousness, mysticism, racism, sexism.
The emergence of network “VKontakte” is quite natural phenomenon taking into consideration the fact that social networks were not available to all compatriots earlier. The reason was the elementary ignorance of the population in the area of computer knowledge. Over the past decade, the situation has changed dramatically. The introduction of computer technology is extremely fast. That is why the question of promotion groups VKontakte is important. Promotion groups VKontakte is the cornerstone of a successful business at the moment. Social network users are the citizens of 12 to 28-years old and the elder people are active users. The attention of many psychologists currently faces the teenage group. The fact is that at this age the mind is not very stable, and often causes dangerous psychological disorder as "Internet addiction". So, this disease has a significant influence on the academic performance of adolescents, their worldview becomes more frequent sexual concern. Everyone get the access to the any information, even to low-grade immoral movies. Internet addiction is an extremely serious psychological disorder that is difficult to treat, and is the cause of an inferiority complex.
The social network has the different effect on an adult group of people 28-to 45-year-old. In this advanced age people can find a partner, classmate and friend. They are pinning their hopes on the social networks. In reality there more "cons" than "plus". Constant communication with women through the "VKontakte" threatens men huge consequences. Gentlemen may forget how to care for elementary ladies. As a consequence, the real date can cause serious problems with the expression of their thoughts. Women may lose their femininity and mystery. Sometimes people post not real photos, so in the future it can turn disaster for them (“The limits of friendship”).
The Facebook is the most popular social network in the world and the most visited website. The company constantly comes up and introduces new ideas, and is active integration with the outside world, creates a «facebook-internet." In the next few years, the rapid growth will remain unchanged.
The twitter is pretty young social network based on micro-blogging. The idea is pretty interesting: the creators took the old ideas of blogging, artificially limit the length of messages and greatly simplify it. It causes interest in today's world, where life is accelerating every day, and the time is not enough.
It’s worth dwelling that social networks don’t have restrictions or boundaries. You can chat with anyone from any country or city instantly. Earlier we needed several days or even weeks to wait for letters and today it is possible to obtain such letters for a moment. You also do not need to pay for delivery of these letters as before, somewhere to go and to send. You can also chat and get the video connection that is even better, because it is a luxury for all the people who use social networking sites.
The scientists conducted the Internet survey to determine the degree of internet’s influence. The diagnostics was held to learn the frequency of use of the Internet and identify the most popular reasons for visiting Internet sites among young people. The respondents aged 20 to 22 years in the amount of 40 people participated in the survey. They used questionnaires as a method of research. The survey revealed that 97.5% of respondents (39 people) use the internet every day more than 12 hours, and only 2.5% (1 people) resorts to its services at least 4 hours a day. The most popular reason for using the Internet is communication. This option was selected in 38 of 40 cases (95%), 5 of the respondents (12.5%) believe the sole purpose of visiting is to chat online. Only for 2 of 40 (5%) of the respondents this goal is not a priority, but rather quite significant. Searching for information (70% - 28 out of 40) is on the second place, followed by downloading music, video, books, games, and so on. On-line shopping was fixed on the fourth place, which is found in 12 out of 40 respondents (30%). And online games are on the last (fifth) place with 10 out of 40 respondents (4%). According to the results the most frequently visited sites are social networks, forums, chat rooms. 40 out of 40 (100%) defined this option on the first place. The second place is occupied by online resources with music, movies, TV shows (60% - 24 out of 40). And finally, political, humorous sites, sites of various companies and online retailers are on the third place (35% - 14 out of 40).
Equally important are the results that have been obtained to the question " Where are you looking for a possible solution or advice getting into a difficult situation?". The most popular answer is search engine «Google / Yandex" or forum (100% of respondents). On the second place we observe relatives and friends in real life (80% - 32 out of 40). Third place is occupied by the parents (70% - 28 out of 40). Taking into consideration the answers to this question, we can conclude that people would rather search for a way out in the Internet rather than they ask for advice of close friends. Internet is their choice and priority (“Social Influence: More Than Just a Game”).
Given the development of computers and the Internet, nowadays people are increasingly out of touch with reality. Especially it contributes to the development of social networks, which appears more and more. Initially, the appointment of social networks was to give people who live in different cities and countries, the ability to communicate, share photos make new friends. Social networks have become very popular among people of all ages, but mostly among young people. So network replaces real human interaction. People, who are passionate about social networks, gradually lose their individuality, cease to grow in the spiritual and personal level (“Social media is everywhere.”).
At the moment social networks are essentially a huge database with a wide range of information about hundreds of millions of people around the world, which is also good structured. So social network limits privacy. Modern social networks offer users to specify almost everything about a person: a photo, a video, connection (including types), interests, an education, an information about the work, places in which a man can be found, preferred products, personal thoughts. Most of the information is available without registration. The one thing you should do is to find user page in the popular social networking sites, the rest can be seen after you add the user as a friend.
In recent years, the net is increasingly open to the outside world, and many users' personal data already available to the public. The more people communicate in a variety of social networks, the more information it can gather without any papers. That is why the controversial statement that "70% of the information collected by intelligence agencies from open sources” today becomes quite believable shade. The time, which a person could spend on education, work or family, is so expensive and valuable but it can be lost in networks. Instead of reading a useful book, pupils and students spend their time watching photos on instagram. As a result, it produces addiction and the need for regular visits to your account on the social network. It’s quite reminiscent of drug addicted people who constantly need to "dose". As we already mentioned social networks have a negative impact on health: weakens human immunity, hormonal balance, the bad work of the nervous and cardiovascular systems (“Are they my friends in real life too?”).
Making a conclusion we have to mention not to put social networking along with all other types of communication. Internet communication should complement your life, and not to be the basis of all activities. The main idea is not to abuse the social network’s use and not to turn all positive points against you. As we understand virtual communication supplants the real one and becomes important in human life. We should be careful with its usage. There are no expressions, gestures, eye contact, language poses and gestures, no true emotions. As we have already mentioned, communicating virtually for a long time, people can forget the simple real communication. So they become addicted to the network. Wrong choice of objectives and priorities can lead to unexpected consequences. For some people to visit a personal page becomes a daily ritual, a person can several times during the day to go to the personal page hoping to see there are some changes. Others seek to add many "friends" or to get many “likes”. However, some users repeat such worthless and meaningless exercise every day. The main issue of network addiction is senseless and unjustified spending personal time, the lack of results and becoming irritable and withdrawn when the computer is not at hand. Social networks themselves do not give get such defects. Employers are more likely to block access to social networks, reasonably believing that many employees spend a lot of their indecent working time. So if you have free time, it is better to spend it on something more valuable and necessary than social networks. You’d better read informative articles, learn new, because the modern Internet provides so many wonderful opportunities for further information. Internet is not just a social network. But still we can’t abuse it and sit in the Internet no more than half an hour a day. Then you just do not have time to do all senseless activity, such as to comment on each photo, to like videos and to learn all the updates of friends. It’s good to use the social network only for its intended purpose without abusing these opportunities, avoiding unnecessary and senseless "chattering". Indeed social networks kill the time, which you could spend on something more valuable that would benefit you in the future (“The Negative Effect of Social Media on Society and Individuals”).
“Are they my friends in real life too?” Web. < http://www.cybersmart.gov.au/Teens/>.
“How Social Networking Changes Friendship?” Web. <www.goodtherapy.org/blog/how-social-networking-changes-friendship-1123127>.
“How Strongly Can Social Media Influence and Control People’s Lives?” Web. <http://www.voicesofyouth.org/en/posts/how-strongly-can-social-media-influence-an>.
“The Meaning of Friendship in a Social Networked World” Web. <http://patimes.org/the-meaning-of-friendship-in-a-social-networked-world/>.
“The Negative Effect of Social Media on Society and Individuals” Web. <http://smallbusiness.chron.com/negative-effect-social-media-socie>.
“Social Media Tools” Web. <http://www.convinceandconvert.com/social-media-tools/social-media-pretend-friends-and-the-lie-of-false-intimacy/>.
“Social media is everywhere.” Web. <http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/social-media-influential/477906>.
“Social Influence: More Than Just a Game” Web. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-newman/social-influence-more>.
“The limits of friendship” Web. <http://www.newyorker.com/science/maria-konnikova/social-media-affect-math-dunbar-number-friendships>.
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