With over 140 million users, Facebook has undeniable power and influence in contemporary society, including in presidential elections, as Americans learned in 2008. An article in CNN recently reported that “Facebook, as The Atlantic’s Rebecca Rosen pointed out, is trying to be the ‘forever’ social network. All its predecessors, from Friendster to MySpace, vanished almost as quickly as they appeared. Now Facebook is saying it wants to be the website where you document the most important events of your entire life, presumably from birth to death, not just this year or next.” This was in relation to a new “Timeline” feature that Facebook has rolled out.
But it is only one of countless other social networking sites that’s changing how we see ourselves, others and the world around us. There are benefits (The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. But It Will Be Tweeted.) and consequences (Facebook Use May Lead to Psychological Disorders in Teens [STUDY) to our modern use of social media.
According to Bakari Kitwana, founder of RapSessions.org and author of The Hip Hop Generation:
Young Blacks and the Crisis in African American Culture (Basic Civitas Books, 2002), “At its most, frequent social networking leaves us busy reflecting, commenting and observing life rather than living it.”
In what ways do YOU think social media is changing our world?