A social network is an online site that focuses on and builds the social relations among people who may be having common interests or are involved in common activities. In these networks, the users create profiles, his or her personal social link and put any other information. Most of these social networks are based on websites and offers means of interaction for the users through the internet. This can be through emails or instant communication in the form of a chat. Generally, this is an online community where the members of this community share ideas, events and declare their interests within this network. Members of these networks may be former or current classmates or workmates. However, various researchers have expressed different ideas regarding the social networks. Some feel that they are helpful while others express worries concerning the use of these networks.
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Advantages of social networks
According to Bernhard Warner (pp4), social networks wastes a lot of time for students and the working people but this time also has its good outcomes. High school students as well as the university students have been found to spend some of their school time in visiting the social networks. Some of these students visit the networks while the lesson is going on. This trend has been enabled by availability of laptops to the school kids and the Wifi-enabled campuses. Mobile phones are also enabling the students to visit these networks. Generally, most of the students spend considerable time of their school work in visiting these networks. However, apart from wasting the time, these networks have enabled the students to get acquainted with the external social world while still in school. The high school students are able to connect with others from different schools and are able to share experiences. These experiences may be in academic work and also in social life and they enable them to tackle some of their school problems. The students are also able to interact with non-students who may be having great ideas to inspire them.
Through these networks, the university students have been able to meet potential employers or people who may direct them to potential employers. They have also been able to learn more about their courses to those experienced in their fields. Some employers may find important information in the profile and may get interested in working with such a person. In such a case, the network connects the student with the employer. Employees who are not satisfied in their current jobs may also meet new employers who may be more fulfilling. They may also learn of new production methods that may be applied to their organizations and improve on the productivity. Generally, social networks help people to meet others who may be of help to their current situations (Degenne, 132).
Problems associated with social networks
Problems with social networks have been identified on the issues of wasting time and privacy matters. However beneficial it may be to the students, they tend to spend more time that they may have used in their class work. The social networks are very addictive and they may lead to deterioration in the class performance of the students. This is very harmful especially to the high school students who get most of the information from their teachers. When they start visiting the social networks in the midst of lessons, they miss what the teacher is saying and it may be difficult to understand it later. This is unlike the university students who may read for themselves better. Employees are also wasting time that they could be using on important work while visiting these networks. This may therefore reduce the productivity of the organization.
According to Martha Irvine (pp10), her main worry when it comes to social networks is its lack of privacy protection. She gets worried over the many online scandals and problems. However much one may wish to maintain privacy of his or her profile information, people have come up with applications where friends can create pages, post information about their interests and also their photos. On these applications, one can post his or her information and whoever want to se the information must download the application. Therefore, all those having the application can access each other's information. The main problem here is that one can use another person's identity to commit a crime or to post offensive information in these networks. Some people may also post dirty information on these networks which may sound offensive to some group of people. For example, some people post matters of sex on these sites and this may not be good to the school going kids.
In my opinion, the benefits of the social networks outweigh the problems. The benefits are beneficial to the students and others who may be involved in them. High school students are learning things that may be of benefit to their future lives while the university students are able to meet the prospective employers through the social networks. Therefore, considering both sides of social networks, their benefits are more than the associated problems.
Social networks are widely used by many people in the world. Their use sis associated with various benefits to both the high school students, university students as well as other people in the world. These social networks have enabled the students improve on their creativity and for university students to meet potential employers. However, some problems associated with them include lack of privacy and waste of tome. But considering both sides, the advantages are more than the problems.