Exchange of user-generated content via technologically-driven platforms can be understood just as the foundation of social media. Today, this has crossed almost every possible boundary and has allowed users to exchange information, modify it, assess it, and above all respond to the information in a completely dissimilar manner. Indeed, social media has transformed the social conduct of humans and has in turn added much more value to decisions. Awareness and feedback are traveling and crossing borders, with enormous impact on consumers’ buying preferences, voters’ voting preferences, and in fact on the overall outlook of the society.
Time has certainly changed from when you could just read a writer’s views in a daily newspaper and had no means to raise any questions or send across any feedback. Social media has accorded voice to every participant and hence has enhanced the reliability of the content. In case you disagree with the facts or perceptions of the content-generator, prompt response can be sent across which shall be accessible to every reader. Certainly, any perception cannot be closed-ended. Social media has brought people a step forward, wherein ease of participation in discussions has opened new ways for responsiveness and widely-accepted conclusions.
Easy access to the desired piece of information, availability of comments and feedback from others, and real-time sharing are the pluses that social media has brought in. Truly, the world was never so contracted, as it has become post the evolution of platforms that have allowed users to generate content, upload it from anywhere, make people notice it, and in case it is worth noticing, then to be paid for the good work. Ranging from Facebook and Twitter to ecommerce websites viz. Flipkart and Snapdeal, users are free to post comments and reviews, which in turn many a times modify the frame of mind of the subsequent reader.
Not just restricted to social networking sites as we believe it to be, social media embraces blogs and microblogs (Twitter), news networking sites (NDTV), and content communities (YouTube). Who could have thought of a day when businesses would spend huge cash on marketing their products and services in the social media? The underlying fact is the ever-high traffic with respect to number of users, along with number of active contributions in dialogues and the impact of such activities on the behavior of the user. From political groups to corporate houses, everyone wants an online presence so as to ensure noticeability and acceptability.
True is the saying that every revolution has a few minuses too. The society has witnessed cases when sharing of misleading content via the social media ignited the fire of hatred in many parts of India and caused communal displeasure. On the contrary, the freedom of speech and the power to share thoughts that have been extended to the society by social media are something to cheer about. Users are the ultimate power-bearers, hence shall recognize the potential and the opportunities. Today, my voice is free to flow, can fetch feedback from readers, and has the supremacy to drive social behavior in a far more constructive manner.