Blog 10

How does social networking influence interpersonal behavior?

So here it is, my last post meant to give an overview of everything I’ve learned thus far about how social networking influences interpersonal behavior. This class has taught me so much more than that but I comment on the desired learning outcomes specifically. We have grown heavily reliant on social networking and thus become incredibly “social” people. However at the same time this becoming “social” is ironically degrading the true social interaction we could have on a daily basis if we would just put our phones down. This is not something I’m about to rant on about despite how easy it would be. I would, however, like to make the point that because social networking is a more “introverted experience” we naturally begin to think in a more self centered way when we focus on it too much. While Facebook’s public quality is a good way of showing affection or gratitude in a public manor it may not always be the most appropriate. Public is public for a reason; it’s not as intimate. I personally thrive off of these more intimate encounters where you interact with a person on a deeper level that Facebook is not as conducive to. A person is much more than their profile picture and whatever rap lyrics they decide to grace the world with that day in the form of a status update. People have quirks and stories that would be just plain weird to put out over Facebook but are still worth getting to know and are very much a part of who they are.

This doesn’t mean that you’re not going to be able to rely on anything that is posted on a social media site and that they should be discounted totally. There are times that you need that public forum and it’s appropriate. Some things in life are great and you want to share them with everyone but even so you need to be careful how you do so because out of context it could be taken as you being arrogant and seeking attention. Maybe you have a friend far away; it’s a great way to keep up with them but at the same time you have to take everything you see with a grain of salt and be willing to make phone calls and such to get the full scope of whats going on in their life. I found a few of these things to be things that I had already realized about the drawbacks of Facebook however I found it especially effective to talk about them in class like we did because it gave me a concrete idea of what these things look like, how other people perceive them, and also what some of the underlying motivation for these actions might be.

Ultimately I learned a deeper understanding of how we interact not only on social media sites but how we interact in person as well. I gained a new perspective on what Facebook is good for and what Facebook is not good for and it really made me think about how much of my life I had based on Facebook in the past. Peter Berger, CEO of online publisher suit101.com put it especially well I thought when he said, “you can’t put the same amount of weight into information gathered via social media as you do information gathered via more traditional methods because it’s just not as genuine.(Peter, 2010)”  You could potentially miss out on your future wife because of some stupid Facebook drama that isn’t all that you’re making it out to be so with that being said I most importantly learned to not  jump to conclusions and take everything in stride because it’s ultimately all you can do.

Peter, B. (Performer) (2010). Social media’s influence on international relations [Web]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3C5Kl58eMTA

Jain, R. (2010, June 20). 4 ways social media is changing your relationships. Retrieved from http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/4-ways-social-media-is-changing-your-relationships/

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