How Social Media changed the face of the internet.
I was a lucky person, or at least I consider myself to be lucky, because I started my internet life in a time when everything changed. It was 2005 and it was a world just before Social Media. Mark Zuckerberg was still just a man in his University dorm and I was busy on forums and browsing the web.
When I started out there were no ongoing conversations and viral wasn’t a major term.
The first viral video I ever saw was numanuma guy on newgrounds.com and dare I say it, the internet seemed like a nicer place .
Then came social media and everything changed, the use of forums dropped — don’t believe me? Here is internet usage of vBulliten just this year, which was one of the most popular ways to create a forum.
But why is that important?
Forums for me have had their day although they were great at the time, social media has made them useless — heavily moderated and barely any freedom, topics were carefully curated so that you knew what to say and where to say it and if someone didn’t like you or what you were saying — you were gone.
With Social Media, now everyone has their say
And that can be good, or bad. It brings with it a lot of hostility, a lot of arguments and a lot of downright idiotic people. But Social Media can be a great place, where you can meet great people for a fleeting moment — like passing in the street — friends are made in an instant and gone the next.
When I first started, the internet was a place where it was you talking to the world and never expecting anything back. But now, it’s you, talking to the world and the world talks back and personally although I hated it at first — isn’t that just great?
No longer do the big corporations own the internet, the internet belongs to the people. It’s like a busy high street with millions and billions of conversations going on — the new kings of media are the content creators in their bedrooms that were once laughed at, they are now considered kings of their generation.
Social Media has changed the world we live in, into a more connected and more social place — conversations happen between New York and Beijing in the blink of an eye. All because of a few people in their university dorm rooms.
Forums had their day, but even then they felt slow and you still felt alone on the internet.
There was always what seemed like a time difference, the lag between question and response. Sometimes waiting days for an answer, but now, if you ask anything on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube or the many other platforms out there, someone is there to respond. The internet doesn’t seem so closed off. Anyone and everyone can say what they want, when they want too— within reason of course.
The internet has broken down the barriers between us and the celebrities, it’s making celebrities out of normal people and celebrities into normal people.
Although it has its bad bits, the internet is a thing of power, beauty, and debate and it changes the world for the better.
And long may it reign.