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Studying The Internet

Rod Munday | Monday May 18, 2009

Categories: Key Concepts, New Media, Convergence, Digital Media, Internet, New Technologies, We Media, Other Topics, Website Analysis, Social Networking Analysis, Web Pages

In this section we will look at some of the ways the internet can be studied. The first part looks at some of the impacts the internet has had on society, the second part examines some of the metaphors that have been used to make sense of what the internet is, and the third part looks at three ways in which the internet may be analysed through institutions, audiences and textual analysis.

Associated Resources

Have a look at the following resources on MediaEdu:

Web Design Tutorials

The Internet and World Wide Web

History of The Internet

Deconstructing Web Pages

A History of Online Social Networking

Social Impacts (Social Networking)

Social networking sites are web pages where users can create their own personal profile and network with their friends online. Users can make their pages without having to acquire specialist programming skills. A typically profile may consist of personal information and photographs, but users can also add music they like and link to various information they find online.

Users of social networking sites connect with their friends and are subsequently connected to all of their contacts to form an ‘extended social network’. Social networking has become very popular in recent years, a Minnesota study found that 77% percent of US teenagers had a profile on a social networking site (umn.edu 2008).

There are also specialist social networking sites devoted to a particular activity, for example ‘Flickr.com’ is a photography site and you ‘YouTube.com’ is a video sharing site.

The first social networking site was ‘Classmates.com’ which started in 1995, but it wasn’t until Friendster in 2002 that they really became popular (New York Times 2007, 456).

The two most popular social networking sites today are Myspace.com, founded by Tom Anderson and Chris DeWolf in 2003 and Facebook.com, founded by Mark Zuckerberg, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes in 2004.

The impact that social networking...

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