Social Media Has Changed How We Communicate
With the birth of the internet and personal computers becoming staples in private homes, people are more connected now than ever. Computers and the internet allow individuals to connect with people thousands of miles away, manage their finances, shop online, and so much more. While inventions like the telephone and the fax machine improved communication, none were as impactful as the internet.
As the internet improved, so too did how we communicate with each other. Eventually, social networking sites began to become more prominent. Now, social media is one of the most, if not the most, vital ways of communication. It has drastically shifted how individuals interact with others. To celebrate social media’s impact on global communications, the world celebrates Social Media Day every June 30. Beginning in June 2010, Social Media Day allows the world to come together to celebrate social networking platforms’ impact.
Not only has social media become an easy way for users to connect with friends and family, but it has also allowed businesses to reach new audiences. The impact of social media goes beyond just building personal relationships. Join Tech Critic on June 30 in celebrating Social Media Day!
What is Social Media Day?
Since the turn of the millennia, the internet has bred a host of different social media platforms. Each has had its own gimmick, but all share the same goal: to connect millions of people across the globe. Mashable launched Social Media Day in June 2010 as a way to recognize and celebrate the impact social media has had on global communication. Mashable is a company that uses social media to connect people across various cultures, fandoms, and regions through various means and media.
In today’s world, social media is arguably the most prominent form of communication around the world. As of April 2020, there are roughly 3.81 billion active social media users, representing nearly half of the world’s population. Each year, the number of users grows by about 8.7%. The average user has an account on eight separate platforms, spending an average of nearly 2.5 hours on social media a day.
15 social media platforms have 300 million or more monthly active users. As you can see, social media has cemented its place as the premier way to connect with people online.
The History of Social Media
The first supercomputer was built decades ago by government agencies. The internet also did exist, but major universities and the government were the only ones to benefit from this connectivity. However, over time, computers began to find themselves in the homes of private citizens, gifting them with the opportunity to surf the web. While affluent families and individuals were often the only ones who could afford a private computer, they eventually became staples in virtually every home in America. As personal computers began filling the homes of private citizens, people began exploring new ways to connect, so social networking sites emerged.
- 1997: Considered the first social network, Six Degrees was created by Andrew Weinreich. It allowed users to create profiles, friend each other, post photos, and more. At its peak, it had about one million members.
- 2002: Friendster debuted in 2002, becoming one of the original social media platforms. It garnered more mainstream attention than its predecessors. Its basis was on the idea that you were only separated from people by six degrees, making it less intimidating to meet new people. Unfortunately, the platform could not keep up with the demand. The site experienced many technical problems, which drove users away.
- 2003: Professionals were awarded their own social networking site with LinkedIn in 2003. They could share their resumes and connect with other business-oriented individuals. In just a year, it reached one million users.
- 2003: In the same year, MySpace debuted. Users could create a “Top 8,” customize their profile, follow band pages, and more. In 2006, MySpace became the number one website in the world. In 2007, it was worth $12 billion.
- 2004: Facebook hit the scene after Mark Zuckerberg created it to be used by Harvard students only. However, the site’s creation is controversial. It quickly became the number one social media platform. Today, it has nearly 2.5 billion monthly users.
- 2005: YouTube became public in 2005, allowing users to share videos.
- 2006: Twitter was a social network platform that allowed users to share or “tweet” short messages made up of 140 characters or less.
- 2010: Instagram exploded onto the scene. What sets Instagram apart from the rest is that you could only share images on the site. Today, it has become a vital tool for marketers around the world.
Since then, new platforms have come and gone, such as Snapchat, Vine, TikTok, and more.
How to Celebrate
To celebrate Social Media Day, you don’t have to change much. Most people use social media every day already. Regardless, we have provided a few activities for those looking to celebrate Social Media Day:
- Post on Social Media: While this may seem obvious, posting on social media is still the best way to celebrate this holiday. Post a selfie to Instagram, send out a tweet, or go live on Facebook. Encourage others to post to celebrate Social Media Day, as well!
- Try New Platforms: Every day, new social media platforms pop up. Why not try out a new one on this day? Who knows? You might fall in love with a new platform!
- Get Social: Just because it’s Social Media Day does not mean you have to spend the entire day online. Get social and meet up with friends and family for dinner or a few responsible drinks. Be sure to take pictures, so you can share them online after!
Social media has become an integral part of connecting people around the world. Friends thousands of miles away can keep in touch. Businesses can engage with and listen to their customers. Social media has changed the way we interact forever. Join Tech Critic in celebrating Social Media Day this June 30!