Online Social Networking - Advantages and Disadvantages

Online social networking has indeed come a long way. There are the more popular ones such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and new ones are popping up almost every day!
Online social networking has indeed come a long way. There are the more popular ones such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and new ones are popping up almost every day!

It's a small world!

Do you remember a time when you spoke to a complete stranger and then through conversation came to know that you both knew a common person? At which time either of you would exclaim "Oh! It's a small world!".

Well, I am sure you will agree with me when I say today that it indeed IS a small world, thanks to social networking through the internet. Of course the internet itself had made the world a very small place a long time ago but at that time (I guess!) we were still connecting with other human beings through the telephone or meeting them in person. Once the online social networking bug bit us there has been no looking back! Today I can connect with anyone who shares a common interest with me sitting on my chair, in the comfort of my home using the various social networking websites available at my disposal - Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, Flickr, Pinterest and many many more.

We do connect with other people using our phones these days, however, we mostly do so using the social media apps available rather than actually making a phone call!

Finally, coming back to why I started writing this hub in the first place - why use social media at all? Are there any advantages? Or is it completely an intrusion of one's privacy?

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Boon factors

Let's look at some 'wows'...

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1. Stay in touch

Excellent way to keep in touch with friends and family.You can also make friends with people halfway around the world without ever having to meet up for a cup of coffee or a drink!

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2. Can help you land your dream job!

Today almost all employers search for potential candidates through professional networking websites.They prefer it if you have an online profile so that they can go through it and get an insight into your past career, the type of connections you have, what your past co workers and managers have to say about you etc. For example, LinkedIn has a recommendation section where you can ask your past co workers or managers to recommend your work. A recruiter going through your profile would be interested in reading these recommendations to get a better notion as to how suitable you are for the job at hand.

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3. Receive first hand information

This is rather interesting...

Recently I read this article in a travel magazine about how this guy traveled through Miami, Florida using Twitter on his cellphone. Whenever he wanted some information on what to do, where to eat etc. he would tweet and promptly get a reply from someone eating at that restaurant right at that moment! Now that's what you call receiving first hand information!

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Your smartphone can cater to all your social networking needs. Every social media site now has its own app version for smartphones!
Your smartphone can cater to all your social networking needs. Every social media site now has its own app version for smartphones!

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4. See a picture/watch a video before you travel

Travel has never been this easy, thanks to social networking. While you are making your itinerary you can visit any of the photo sharing sites like Flickr, Shutterfly, Snapfish to see what your place of visit would look like or just go to YouTube and watch a video.

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Eiffel Tower, Paris. Photo sharing sites such as Flickr are useful for seeing beautiful pictures of places you wish to visit.
Eiffel Tower, Paris. Photo sharing sites such as Flickr are useful for seeing beautiful pictures of places you wish to visit.

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Here's a walking tour of Paris, France on YouTube

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HubPages is also a form of social network...

I would not restrict social networking to Facebook,Twitter, LinkedIn or YouTube. What I am doing on HubPages is also a form of social networking. I am sharing my thoughts with everyone, people who read them are sharing their opinions through their comments, I am in turn also reading others' hubs and sharing my opinions with them.

This is almost like the food chain! I am just a small spider somewhere in the world wide web trying to share my thoughts with millions of other spiders elsewhere in the web. And at the same time I am trying to reap monetary benefits from all my networking activity.

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Bane reasons

But it's not all rosy out there. There are some ill effects. Here are some 'boos'...

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1. Can be used for unwanted stuff

Some people take advantage of the anonymity the internet can provide and resort to writing about or uploading unnecessary content (for example pornography). But I am glad that websites like HubPages and YouTube keep the filth out. Else it would be a menace for people who are actually interested in sharing knowledge. And sites like Facebook have enough privacy settings to keep out the unwanted stuff.

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2. Don't share too much personal information

How much you want to reveal about yourself on the internet is finally up to you and I would advise you to check the sanctity of any website before you go ahead and divulge all your details. Also, you must be very careful about any photographs that you upload of yourself on the internet, I don't think I have to tell you about photo morphing.

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3. Keep your professional life away from personal social sites

Try not to be too vocal about what you don't like about your job, your boss or your colleagues on social networking sites. Certainly doesn't help you in any way! On the contrary it could land you in a lot of trouble.

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4. Stick to mostly sharing general info

Try to keep all wall posts, tweets, blogs, discussions more general with a view to share information with others only. On a public forum or website avoid making racist comments, jokes etc.

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5. Don't friend strangers on social sites

Online social networking is very popular among teenagers today and I have read about many criminal incidents which have occurred due to overexposed networking. We should avoid contacting strangers on websites like Facebook where most of us share a lot of intimate information between friends and family.

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To sum it up, I would say that take advantage of all the good things online social networking has to offer but be careful while using it.

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Comments 30 comments

Rebecca E. profile image

Rebecca E. 6 years ago from Canada

well done, in fact I beleive it can be both, a boon and a bane, but then I've been on teh internet for a while, so the boon is here, only because I know how to use it


ponx profile image

ponx 6 years ago from USA Author

Hi Rebecca...thanks for visiting my profile and dropping your comment.Yes of course it is a boon as I could not imagine how life would be without the internet anymore!But as I mentioned we must be careful and take advantage of all the resources we have at hand.And enjoy it while we're at it!


Micromaniac profile image

Micromaniac 6 years ago

Microjob.co uses social networking to make advertising affordable. Its uses social sites like facebook and twitter etc. to promote sites and gain traffic. It truly is revolutionary. Not a bad way to make money either.


ponx profile image

ponx 6 years ago from USA Author

Thanks for the info Micromaniac...will have a look at the website...


elayne001 profile image

elayne001 6 years ago from Rocky Mountains

Great hub - can never be too careful. I wrote a similar hub. Thanks.


ponx profile image

ponx 6 years ago from USA Author

Yes elayne001....I will read your hub as well :)


chinemeremz profile image

chinemeremz 6 years ago

Hi ponx it was really nice going over this nice piece of work (hub). Since the privacy concerns on FaceBook arose with so many user looking for ways to cancel their account, I feel wary using social media these days as it could come back as your past to haunt you. Thanks for this indepth analysis. I wish to read more of such educative hubs from your stables. Thanks once more for sharing.


ponx profile image

ponx 6 years ago from USA Author

Thanks for dropping by chine. Yes privacy concerns are an issue with almost all the social n/wing sites that we have out there. But I guess you just need to use them wisely.


soulpepper profile image

soulpepper 5 years ago

very good! Thanks


ponx profile image

ponx 5 years ago from USA Author

Thanks for stopping by soulpepper.


DeAd Dolls Inc profile image

DeAd Dolls Inc 5 years ago

Amazingly Hub, voted up.

-DD


ponx profile image

ponx 5 years ago from USA Author

Thank you DD!


dkanofsky profile image

dkanofsky 5 years ago from Bethalto, Illinois

Social networking has literally become a gold mine for many internet marketers when they use it the right way, namely, getting to know the person first by establishing an online relationship.


ponx profile image

ponx 5 years ago from USA Author

Well pointed out dkanofsky, certainly one of the advantages of social networking in today's online world!


priyanka chopra 5 years ago

well said hub pages!!!!!!!!


fatty 5 years ago

thankx


skyfire profile image

skyfire 5 years ago

I noticed that these days people post valuable content on social networks like facebook and g+ but not on their blog. So that is one big disadvantage if you're blogger. Making new connection is good thing but if we're limiting our growth because of these social networks then i guess it may not be a good idea. :)


Maralexa profile image

Maralexa 5 years ago from Vancouver, Canada and San Jose del Cabo, Mexico

Thnx Ponx! Good hub. I think that next to security, helpful advice on how to use the particular networking site is needed. Also, I notice that people's networks can become so large and diverse that they no longer have much meaning. I understand that people can now set up "groups" to differentiate their following. That could be very worthwhile for legitimate marketers.

Thank you, I liked the hub.


RobertDCrandell profile image

RobertDCrandell 5 years ago

Great information!Voted up and shared!


Mud Engineer profile image

Mud Engineer 4 years ago from Texas

Good comparison of online social networking advantages and disadvantages. I would like to say though that Facebook continues to be a problem for some of the social media beginners out there. A lot of "newbie" profiles are easy to break into because of lame security questions like favorite foods and pet names. This has lead to accounts being hacked and taken over by predators who can then find provocative photos and distribute them elsewhere. Vulnerabilities like these need to be broadcast so that new internet socialites don't get taken advantage of. Again, good hub. Thumbs up and followed.


Ladybird33 profile image

Ladybird33 4 years ago from Georgia USA

Very helpful, thank you for sharing your wisdom.


tanisha lalaji 4 years ago

it depends upon people how they use the networking sites from my point of view its both bane & boon


hoteltravel profile image

hoteltravel 4 years ago from Thailand

Well-written hub! Beginners and not-so-tech-savvy fall prey to bad elements easily. Social networking sites should take the initiative to educate this group and enhance security features to prevent abuse.


nachi 4 years ago

thanks for the information, it really helps in my thesis,


mamicado.2 4 years ago

social network has easier for us because it cheaper and it is simple for everyone,builds credibility and connects people


cityalice profile image

cityalice 4 years ago

Good information. Social networking seems to have replaced the phone box, well, really Facebook did. Nice list of the social media hubpages.


ponx profile image

ponx 4 years ago from USA Author

Thanks cityalice!


JDIZM profile image

JDIZM 4 years ago

some pretty good pros and cons there, nice hub


ponx profile image

ponx 4 years ago from USA Author

Thanks JDIZM!


Harshini 3 years ago

It is really helpful for my assignment. Thank you so much.

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