I love the internet. A bulk of my free time is spent on it. As a college student of the information age, my life is driven by the fast-paced, instant gratification of the World Wide Web. I receive the majority of my news from blogs and online newspapers/magazines, most of my TV viewing comes from podcasts or Hulu, and a good portion of my communication with the outside world is through social media.
Although I am now a faithful member of the online communicating community, I caught on to the fad late. My first dip into the social media pot happened my junior year of high school (2007). After telling a friend that I thought blogging was the dumbest thing I had ever heard of, I started my own blog. This was a monumental moment in my online life; I still have that same blog, and I am still devoted to posting on it as much as I can. The blog kept me busy for quite some time, but I eventually began to crave more. Up until the second half of my junior year, I held the belief that I did not need a Facebook account, and that I would never get one. Shortly after I established this fundamental doctrine, I signed up for a Facebook account.
I now have active accounts on Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, Skype, Hulu, Youtube, and Vimeo; whenever I post a new blog or video, Twitter immediately updates itself and sends an update to Facebook as well. All of the news sites and blogs I follow are combined into one feed that I access through Google Reader and Rockmelt. Many of my college courses have Facebook pages to post assignments or to host online discussions.
In short, my life intricately revolves around social networking and the internet. But it’s not just a large part of my life. Every day, more and more of my friends create Twitter accounts, or discover Tumblr, or even create their own websites. After 10 pm, most of the discussion between my friends and I is held via Facebook chat or Skype. We are even beginning to use Twitter as a way to communicate dinner plans.
It is safe to say that my generation will use social media as the main tool for communication in the future. Business, advertising, and entertainment will all be affected because of this realization, and each market will have to adapt to this change if they intend on staying competitive.
Although there are negative side effects to this, it does allow the world to shrink even more, giving us the capability to reach people across the globe. Whether you like it or not, social media is not a fad; it is here to stay, and it will only get bigger – and I for one, couldn’t be more excited.