Social media comprises communication websites that facilitate relationship forming between users from diverse backgrounds, resulting in a rich social structure. User generated content encourages inquiry and decision-making. Given the relevance of social media to various stakeholders. It has received significant attention from researchers of various fields, including information systems. There exists no comprehensive review that integrates and synthesises the findings of literature on social media. This study discusses the findings of 132 papers (in selected IS journals) on social media and social networking published between 1997 and 2017.
Most papers reviewed here examine the behavioural side of social media, investigate the aspect of reviews and recommendations, and study its integration for organizational purposes. Furthermore, many studies have investigated the viability of online communities/social media as a marketing medium.
While others have explored various aspects of social media, including the risks associated with its use, the value that it creates, and the negative stigma attached to it within workplaces. The use of social media for information sharing during critical events as well as for seeking and/or rendering help has also been investigated in prior research. Other contexts include political and public administration, and the comparison between traditional and social media. Overall, our study identifies multiple emergent themes in the existing corpus, thereby furthering our understanding of advances in social media research. The integrated view of the extant literature that our study presents can help avoid duplication by future researchers, whilst offering fruitful lines of enquiry to help shape research for this emerging field.
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Social media has become so integral a part of the daily lives of urbanites that it’s hard to imagine a day without it. As much as some of us may take the occasional “social media detox” or attempt to avoid it altogether, there’s no denying its growth and influence on modern lifestyle.
From young to old, individuals to businesses, social media platforms are no longer confined to certain demographics. For most of us, it’s a source of information, a means to social connection, a space for individual expression, or even a call to activism; while for others, it may be their bread and butter.
When referring to social media platforms, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and most recently, TikTok often comes to mind.
Literature Search Method
The literature search for this analysis was conducted in the following two phases:
1. keyword-based search and analysis to explore the overall evolution of social media literature.
2. manual search across specific IS journals to understand the emerging IS perspectives on this topic.
Read on to know from where it all began…
Evolution of Social Media
- Six Degrees (1997)
- Friendster (2002)
- My Space (2003)
- LinkedIn (2003)
- Facebook (2004)
- YouTube (2005)
- Reddit (2005)
- Twitter (2006)
- Instagram (2010)
- Snapchat (2011)
- Clubhouse (2020)
Clubhouse is the latest social media platform to join the club. Debuting for iOS only in 2020, amid global lockdowns, Clubhouse is an invitation-only audio-based social media app that allows users to communicate in voice chat rooms where they can host or join discussions with people around the globe, or chat with friends in private. It drew waves of users after celebrities and entrepreneurs like Oprah Winfrey, Drake, and Elon Musk voiced their approval for the app, especially in the first quarter of 2021.
Whichever social media platform(s) you’re currently using, the rapid changes we’ve seen over the past two decades show that they will only continue to evolve. With e-commerce, virtual reality, augmented reality, and digital marketing also maturing in tandem, it’s likely we’ll see more developments in those areas in the near future.
What’s Next for Social Media?
Future is only limited to one’s imagination. Although the history of social media has been brief, it has told its tale. Rapid changes in the demand, advancements in technology, soaring financial demands in the market, and the change in the culture will define and transform the overall condition of the social media landscape.
Will Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and numerous other social media giants follow the footsteps of their predecessors such as Myspace and Orkut, or will they soar higher than ever? Can social media evolve itself, or is it at its primal age? The answers to these questions lie in the vault of time.
Humans are social beings. Communication and commerce are both driven only through interaction. Both of these facts will be the cornerstones in shaping the future and evolution of social media in the future and beyond.
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