The Effects Of Cyberculture On The Family

4565 words - 19 pages

The Effects of Social Networking on the Family
Moira Galea
University of Malta

Abstract
There are different ways how we can communicate online. Social Networking Sites aim to build online communities of people sharing common interests. Social Networking Sites have become increasingly common, in recent years, for a variety of purposes. There are various advantages and disadvantages associated with the use of these sites. Most important is their effect on communication, especially within the family. This is a new reality faced by the members of the family today. A set of measures must be adopted to protect our children from the hazards that may be encountered online. We can help people ...view middle of the document...

1. Email is the most common form of communication that is used on the web to communicate with friends, colleagues and members of distant family. Most people today check their mail at least once a day.
2. Photos and videos are probably one of the most common types of information shared online. People share photos through email, PowerPoint presentations and by posting them on Social Networking Sites for their friends to see.
3. Blogs are commonly shared with work colleagues and the public in general.
4. Social networking and instant messaging are perhaps the newest form of communication online. They have recently become very popular, especially among teens and young adults.

Social Networking Sites
Social Networking Sites have introduced us to a new way of socializing, a new way of keeping up to date with our friends and acquaintances. They have completely revolutionized our way of socializing. Whereas the first Social Network Sites that were available focused more on keeping track of friends and previous classmates, nowadays these sites are also being used to introduce ourselves to new friends and typically friends of friends. Some of the most common Social Network Sites that are currently being used are Facebook, MySpace, Hi5 and Friendster. Most students today have integrated the use of Social Networking Sites into their daily practice. They use them several times a day to communicate with their friends and to update themselves as to what is going on around them. This phenomenon is also widely used by adults.

Several organizations use facebook to advertise their ideologies. The church today is also seeking these modern methods of communication to evangelize. The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, (2009) affirmed “its desire to take advantage of social networking sites as a way to communicate the love of Jesus Christ” . During a meeting of the Commission for the Media of the Council of European Bishops' Conferences, CCEE (2009): “Christian Hernandez, in charge of the commercial development of Facebook, showed how Christian initiatives have arisen in the Facebook world that range from a Shrine of Lourdes profile, to "Jesus Daily," a profile that offers phrases from the Gospel, and has more than one million followers.” Facebook seems to be the most common Social Networking Site that is currently being used by young and old.

Social Network Sites provide a profile for the user. This is similar to a homepage about the individual. Here the user enters information about him/herself and about his/her interests. A photo is also added on this page. This page can be available to anyone, but users can adjust their security settings to allow only their friends to access the page. Having created their profile, users normally invite their friends to join their network, and users can become friends, only after confirmation from both sides. This reduces the risk of people spying on other users’ profiles without their knowledge. Users are...

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