Click here to close now.


Related Topics: Agile Computing, Containers Expo Blog

Agile Computing: Article

Does Social Media Reflect Society?

Social media has changed society in many ways

You are what you eat; You become what you believe; I am not my art.  A 2011 study from the University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Psychology titled "Manifestations of Personality in Online Social Networks: Self-Reported Facebook-Related Behaviors and Observable Profile Information" found that Facebook users are no different online than they are offline.

The study also declared a strong connection between someone’s real personality and their Facebook-related behavior. Social and personality processes, according to the study, accurately mirror non-virtual environments.  It was published in the academic journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking. Professor Samuel D. Gosling and his team looked at the big five personality traits – openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism and found that self-reported personality traits are accurately reflected in online social networks such as Facebook.  Extroverted users reported the most friends and the highest engagement while conscientious types had the least.  Simply, extroverts engaged more than introverts.

Merriam-Webster defines society in part as, companionship or association with one’s fellows : a voluntary association of individuals for common ends : an organized group working together or periodically meeting because of common interests, beliefs, or profession : an enduring and cooperating social group whose members have developed organized patterns of relationships through interaction with one another : a community, nation, or broad grouping of people having common traditions, institutions, and collective activities and interests.

Social media has changed society in many ways.  We used to just live in a society – our neighborhood, town, city – and (hopefully) looked out for each other, cared for each other and got together for specific causes. This is our community.  The human social creature needed human contact/interaction and participated within that society…but the circle was somewhat limited to a geographic region.  Granted, some societies are nationwide clubs, groups, memberships or associations that span greater distances – Toastmasters, Kiwanis or college alumni for instance. 

Now, our circle of friends or association with one’s fellows requires no physical gathering.  We live in our physical geographic society but also engage in our cyber communities that span cities, states, countries and with SETI, universes.  Years ago I often wondered if the internet would create a society of hermits since no one really needed to go outside and interact with others in the real world.  But we are social creatures and our survival requires us to participate in a non-cyber way.  Of course there are people that do not want anything to do with society and live in secluded locations to avoid any human interaction.  Most of us, however, like it or not, must interact in society on a daily basis.

Often our social cyber-interaction is in response to events in the physical society.  We use social media as a way to report, learn and engage with those who are experiencing anything from turmoil to joy in their physical society. World events.  Even the Occupiers, who have used social media to great extent, still came together physically – within their geographic circle(s) – to form their mini-societies.  In some situations, social media has been the only avenue for ‘breaking’ news getting out to the masses.  (Incidentally, it seems like every story on news websites is ‘breaking’ these days – it seems to have lost it’s power)

Breaking Bad, on the other hand, is a darn good show.

In societies we often share – information, goods, ideas, secrets – for the benefit of the society.  Many of us have heard the warnings from security experts about keeping passwords a secret.  Now, as a form of affection and devotion, teens are sharing their passwords to email, social networks and other accounts.  Since it is risky and relationships can quickly sour via social media, they feel that the symbolism is powerful.  Apparently, the world’s first divorce by Facebook occurred back in 2009 and more recently Deion Sanders announced his divorce on Facebook this past December.  In addition, a survey conducted by UK divorce website > in December 2009 found that 20% of behavior petitions contained the word “Facebook.” A follow up survey in December 2011 found that number has greatly increased during 2011 to 33% of behavior allegations in petitions.

Even the crooks are involved.  We’ve seen the stories about hijacked accounts, malware distribution and the ever popular, ‘I’m stuck in some foreign country, lost my wallet and need to pay the hotel’ scam.  I’m amazed that just a decade ago, security experts warned that you shouldn’t say, ‘We’re not home right now,’ on your answering machine.  That tells riff-raff that the property is ripe for the pickings.  Yet, just a few years later people are posting that they are over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house some 300 miles away.  Their coordinates are available, their home town and sometimes a picture of the actual empty home are posted on the social network.  And then they wonder how they could have been burglarized.  It’s has also caught/captured the idiot criminals who feel the need to share their misdeeds.  In some cases, we share too much and don’t even realize that we’re diminishing our own privacy.  And, of course, there are some who can’t get enough exposure with 24 hour cams following their every move.

Social networks have become one of our society’s primary tools for communication and as a society it is important to communicate effectively.  I’ve always felt that the internet, particularly the web, was a reflection of society.  It’s chronicled, reflected and magnified our lives along with automatically storing and archiving almost every move we make.  People have fallen in love, ordered goods, started movements, spread rumors, gotten arrested/fired/dumped, done banking, filed complaints/kudos, kept in touch, tracked progress, committed crimes, shared ideas and pretty much anything else that didn’t require physical contact.  It’s our journal, reminder, mirror, confidant and has certainly wiggled it’s way into and become part of society.  A community within our society.  But remember, What Happens on the Internet, Stays on the Internet.


Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

Latest Stories
There are many considerations when moving applications from on-premise to cloud. It is critical to understand the benefits and also challenges of this migration. A successful migration will result in lower Total Cost of Ownership, yet offer the same or higher level of robustness. Migration to cloud shifts computing resources from your data center, which can yield significant advantages provided that the cloud vendor an offer enterprise-grade quality for your application.
DevOps is gaining traction in the federal government – and for good reasons. Heightened user expectations are pushing IT organizations to accelerate application development and support more innovation. At the same time, budgetary constraints require that agencies find ways to decrease the cost of developing, maintaining, and running applications. IT now faces a daunting task: do more and react faster than ever before – all with fewer resources.
Today air travel is a minefield of delays, hassles and customer disappointment. Airlines struggle to revitalize the experience. GE and M2Mi will demonstrate practical examples of how IoT solutions are helping airlines bring back personalization, reduce trip time and improve reliability. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Dr. Sarah Cooper, M2Mi's VP Business Development and Engineering, will explore the IoT cloud-based platform technologies driv...
Containers have changed the mind of IT in DevOps. They enable developers to work with dev, test, stage and production environments identically. Containers provide the right abstraction for microservices and many cloud platforms have integrated them into deployment pipelines. DevOps and Containers together help companies to achieve their business goals faster and more effectively.
The web app is agile. The REST API is agile. The testing and planning are agile. But alas, data infrastructures certainly are not. Once an application matures, changing the shape or indexing scheme of data often forces at best a top down planning exercise and at worst includes schema changes that force downtime. The time has come for a new approach that fundamentally advances the agility of distributed data infrastructures. Come learn about a new solution to the problems faced by software organ...
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership ability. Many are unable to effectively engage and inspire, creating forward momentum in the direction of desired change. Renowned for its approach to leadership and emphasis on their people, organizations increasingly look to our military for insight into these challenges.
Achim Weiss is Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of ProfitBricks. In 1995, he broke off his studies to co-found the web hosting company "Schlund+Partner." The company "Schlund+Partner" later became the 1&1 web hosting product line. From 1995 to 2008, he was the technical director for several important projects: the largest web hosting platform in the world, the second largest DSL platform, a video on-demand delivery network, the largest eMail backend in Europe, and a universal billing syste...
Electric power utilities face relentless pressure on their financial performance, and reducing distribution grid losses is one of the last untapped opportunities to meet their business goals. Combining IoT-enabled sensors and cloud-based data analytics, utilities now are able to find, quantify and reduce losses faster – and with a smaller IT footprint. Solutions exist using Internet-enabled sensors deployed temporarily at strategic locations within the distribution grid to measure actual line lo...
Cloud computing delivers on-demand resources that provide businesses with flexibility and cost-savings. The challenge in moving workloads to the cloud has been the cost and complexity of ensuring the initial and ongoing security and regulatory (PCI, HIPAA, FFIEC) compliance across private and public clouds. Manual security compliance is slow, prone to human error, and represents over 50% of the cost of managing cloud applications. Determining how to automate cloud security compliance is critical...
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, will explore the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends an...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data...
Chris Van Tuin, Chief Technologist for the Western US at Red Hat, has over 20 years of experience in IT and Software. Since joining Red Hat in 2005, he has been architecting solutions for strategic customers and partners with a focus on emerging technologies including IaaS, PaaS, and DevOps. He started his career at Intel in IT and Managed Hosting followed by leadership roles in services and sales engineering at Loudcloud and Linux startups.
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”