Social media is very broad term. However, we are using social media every day.
Then. what is social media?
The characteristics of social media can be divided into four.
1. Social media is peripheral activity
2. It is many to many relationship instead of one to many
3. Transparency (there are no secrets)
3. Disruption (Blurring of boundaries between personal and professional lives)
Firstly, Peripheral activity
Social media usually happens at the edge of internet’s main stream
It means that the information would be available those who only follows it’s stream.
This indicates that social media stays around web properties not in web properties such as Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter etc.
Therefore, it is very hard to CEO to acknowledge social media.
Secondly, the relationship of social media is many to many relationship.
Most of websites which is not included social media is one to many relationship.
It means that the content contribution is given by the request of users.
However, social media encourages users to contribute contents. It gives authority to change content. For example, Wikipedia gives authority to users to edit information.
Transparency is third characteristics of social media.
There is no secrets in social media. Personal things can be exposed or shown to others with consent of the uploader.
For example, company can track down trends of people when it establishes new project by research on Facebook or Twitter.
Lastly, disruption is the final characteristic of social media.
It blurs boundaries between personal and professional lives.
For example, every can be reporter in News if they use social media. If a person walking by car crash site, they can record video with mobile phone and upload that file on to Youtube.
Therefore, social media is very broad term, but it is very specific term. We use it everyday but we do not even recognise we are surrounded by it.
Acknowledging Cook (2008)