In today’s society social network services have become somewhat of a living lifestyle and a form of routine that people are immune to associated with on a daily basis. “Social networking aide’s long distance communication greatly but there must be a stopping point. It cannot become our main form of communication and interaction.” – Anonymous
Social Networking Sites such as: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Myspace, Flickr etc… Helps people stay connected within different parts of the world. It is used for things like; chatting, posting photos, commenting, blogging, sharing information to one another and other socialising purposes. Users are able to share any information they wish, with the online world. This also impacts you as an individual with:
(1) Who you say you are, on these social networking sites
(2) What others perceive of you, with what you put online ; And
(3) How the things you share online, can impact you as a person
Users are able to share and post on these social networking sites, in waysthat exposes them as an individual and their ‘identity’. “A person’s identity is defined as the totality of one’s self-construal, in which how one construes oneself in the present expresses the continuity between how one construes oneself as one was in the past and how one construes oneself as one aspires to be in the future” (Weinrich 1986) Using these social sites, help users construct and create an identity of themselves to the online world. Whether it’s posting a status, retweeting a tweet, sharing a video and uploading photos of themselves or others. These are the many ways people use these sites to express themselves.
“you’re representing yourself on a database. Then you live according to that database. You fill in checkmarks saying this is what I’m interested in, this is who I am, this is the music I want to hear, and you become a caricature of yourself”(University Declares a Week Without Social Media 3).
As mentioned above, social networking sites are becoming an instance routine for people on a daily basis. People are constantly checking their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc… whether it’s updating what they are doing or seeing what others are doing. Generations of today have adapted to the technologies nowadays and are more familiar with its uses and older generations. They are what most people call ‘Digital Natives’. “Digital Natives are used to receiving information really fast. They like to parallel process and multi-task” Marc Prensky (2001)
Social Networking Sites have an impact on a person’s identity because it’s something that has grown into a person’s daily routine. It’s something that has become resistant to a person’s life. If people are constantly on these sites everyday, then it becomes the norm to them. It has a way of effecting their life, therefore impacting their identity.
Society, T. 2013. The Effects of Social Networking upon Society | Academic About pop culture/trends and social issues/civics. [online] Available at: http://teenink.com/nonfiction/academic/article/485925/The-Effects-of-Social-Networking-upon-Society/
Weinreich, P. (1986a). The operationalisation of identity theory in racial and ethnic relations, in J.Rex and D.Mason (eds). “Theories of Race and Ethnic Relations”. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Prensky, M. 2001. Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants. [e-book] pp. 1-2. Available through: http://www.marcprensky.com/writing/Prensky%20-%20Digital%20Natives,%20Digital%20Immigrants%20-%20Part1.pdf