Of my 1,129 Facebook “friends,” how many am I actually friends with? A lot are from Elementary School and High School, of whom I barely even knew. Some are friends of friends that I met once. I don’t intend on “unfriending” people, so smaller social media networks, such as Instagram and SnapChat, are starting to become a lot more appealing.
Recently, there has been more buzz around smaller social media networks than larger social media networks. Facebook and Twitter are two of the largest social media networks where people have a lot of “weak-ties.” On Twitter, I follow a lot of people I don’t even know, like Kim Kardashian. Most people you know have a Facebook or Twitter account. However, how often people use them has been declining over the past few years. Most people, including myself, have been using Facebook for a long time and have therefore accumulated a large number of “friends.”
Image Courtesy of Flickr User jurvetson
With such a large amount of “weak-ties,” these networks can begin to feel less social. People have also lost interest in these larger social networking sites because older generations are starting to use them too. When some of my friends’ parents started joining Facebook, my Mom told me she would never get join. However, just last year, even my Mom joined the trend. When I first joined Facebook, I wasn’t as cautious about what I posted,but now I always have to remember the large audience that can see my actions.
Smaller social media networks have been becoming increasingly popular. Younger people are drawn to their exclusivity. They are especially attractive because the older generation is slower to catch on to these newer social media sites and applications. People are able to do what they like to do on Facebook and Twitter, but with their closer friends. On Instagram, I get to see my more immediate friends’ pictures! On SnapChat, I send personal funny photos to my closest friends that they can only see for a few seconds!
I think that people will continue to use Facebook and Twitter, but there is a lot of popularity with the smaller social media networks. The posts and messages can be a lot more personal because it isn’t as public and is seen by closer friends. Teens in focus groups conducted by the Pew Research Internet Project aren’t as active with Facebook and are “disliking the increasing adult presence, people sharing excessively, and stressful ‘drama.’” I think types of social media are good, but one may be preferred depending on the type of relationship and connection you are trying to create or maintain.
Featured Image courtesy of Flickr user beta75.se