Social Technologies

Social teachnologies (or media) consists of a variety of tools and technologies that includes

  • collaborative projects (e.g., Wikipedia and wiki-spaces),
  • blogs (e.g., WordPress) and microblogs (e.g., Twitter),
  • content communities (e.g., YouTube),
  • social networking sites (e.g., Facebook and Cyworld),
  • folksonomies or tagging (e.g., delicious),
  • virtual game worlds (e.g., World of Warcraft),
  • virtual social worlds (e.g., Second Life), and
  • all other internet-based platforms that facilitate the creation & exchange of UGC (Khan, forthcoming).

All these social technologies are built on Web 2.0 philosophy, but they differ according to the extent to which they focus on the relationships among social actors, users’ identities, conversations among social actors, content sharing, social presence (the ability to know if other users are accessible), reputation management, and the extent to which people can form groups (Kietzmann et al., 2011)[1]. For example, a social network site is a type of social technology that focuses mainly on social relationships among social actors and YouTube is a type of social technologgy that mainly focus on the sharing of contents (e.g., videos).

Is Social Media/technology and SNS same?

No. These two terms/concepts are usually confused. A social network service or site (SNS) is an internet-based platform that is used to build and maintain social relations among people who share interests, activities, backgrounds, or real-life connections. SNS is an example of the application of social media i.e., all SNS are social media, but not all social media are SNS. For example, Facebook is an SNS (i.e., facilitate online social networking) and is based on Web 2.0 concepts (i.e., social media & UGC), however, Wikipedia is a type of social media (focused more on online collaborative content creation), but not an SNS (i.e., does not facilitate online social networking). Similarly, all SNS are based on Web 2.0, but not all Web 2.0 are SNS and all social media are based on Web 2.0 concept.

Reference
-Khan, G. F., (forthcoming), the Government 2.0 Utilization Model and Implementation Scenarios, Information Development (SSCI), forthcoming,AbstractDownload Authors’ version.
-H. Kietzmann, Kristopher Hermkens, Ian P. McCarthy, Bruno S. Silvestre, Social media? Get serious! Understanding the functional building blocks of social media, Business Horizons, Volume 54, Issue 3, May–June 2011, Pages 241-251, ISSN 0007-6813, 10.1016/j.bushor.2011.01.005.


[1] More discussion on how social media tools differ can be found in Kietzmann et al., (2011)’s study: Jan H. Kietzmann, Kristopher Hermkens, Ian P. McCarthy, Bruno S. Silvestre, Social media? Get serious! Understanding the functional building blocks of social media, Business Horizons, Volume 54, Issue 3, May–June 2011, Pages 241-251, ISSN 0007-6813, 10.1016/j.bushor.2011.01.005.

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