It is imperative to avow that Facebook is amongst the most visited social group sites. Initiate by Mark Zuckerberg in 2003, this site has expanded exponentially in the last few years. Created with the help of fellow students, Facebook was initially used in Harvard University only and later in other colleges. Realizing that the primary activity of Facebook was to make comparison of students using their pictures, the university management ordered for its closure.
Mark was to face disciplinary measures for breaching rights to privacy. Harvard University later dropped any punitive action against Mark. In 2005, facebook rolled out internationally. This was the first step that made it a force in the social network industry. The roll out in high school gave way for corporation to register and finally face book opened up for members of the public to establish accounts. Controversy and uncertainty surrounded facebook from its inception and early years of operation.
Mark’s schoolmates filled a lawsuit disputing his ownership on the basis that he borrowed their ideas, hence contravening the scholar Property Act. The judge ruled in favour of Mark, since agreements regarding this case occurred during the course of a casual chat, in the hostel that they could not constitute a legal contract. The Judge dismissed consequent attempts to bring this case back to court and opted for an out of patio settlement (Philips).
Facebook mainly earns its revenues from advertisements and has become a multimillion company attracting the interest of other corporations in the digital industry. It is evident that facebook has advanced social networking; nonetheless, it has myriads of detrimental aspects in the contemporary society.
The emergence of facebook in 2005 completely transformed the social network scene first in the US and then globally. The exponential growth of facebook was unprecedented and left many people startled. Debate arising from dismissal of the case disputing facebook ownership on basis of technicality, only served to popularise the site.
This social phenomenon has opened new advertising avenues and further reduced the cost of interaction between the global communities, as it charges no fee. In view of the above, facebook users need to be cautious not to be addicted or socially isolated due to prolonged use.
Face book’s inadequate applications have opened doors for contravention of privacy rights with regard to users’ information. Users with ill intentions have used facebook to steal identity of innocent unaware users and utilize it to commit crime. Development of children occurs best when they are in constant communique with their parents but facebook has turned this impossible by making young people very dependent on digital media as their core means of communication rather than in person conversations.
Research reveals that most children avoid in person conversations due to prolonged use of online media to communicate. Facebook has no control as to the content communicated on the network, hence it is subject to misuse .Many blogs through which people interact exercise control over the message that users send over the blog, ensuring sanity on those blogs and enforcing discipline. On many incidences, facebook has acted as a platform to spread panic based on unverified information.
Exaggerated news of the rapid spread of swine flu caused a lot of panic and social sites like facebook were at fault for magnifying the spread of the disease. Facebook administration should set up measure to ensure that unscrupulous members do not use their accounts to spread panic, this in effect that innocent users get protection from the infringements. Information is power, with facebook having over 400 million members who created profiles that contain personal details then it has incomprehensible power.
Facebook contains a large amount of user information that is susceptible to misuse. It is dangerous to leave such a large volume of information that contains private details of millions of individuals with an entity that faces minimal regulations like facebook. From analysis done on several accounts, it is possible to tell the sexuality of person based on the friends in facebook, it is; therefore, important to protect personal details (Bankston).
Various consumer protection organisations have aired their concerns over the ease with which a user can illegally gain access to other accounts. Not only does it expose the account holder to manipulation but also infringes on the person’s right to privacy. Face book took some far-reaching measures to prevent infringement of privacy rights.
It rolled out fresh privacy settings, which were supposed to give account holders more control over their data. Prior solitude settings were too complex for the average users of facebook to understand. The new facebook settings were a good start for the administration in the overhaul of its privacy settings. Such settings have integrated novel features that allow a user to limit the people that can view a certain piece that the use has uploaded.
However, the most encouraging thing is that the site has taken up the challenge of ensuring that its users apply these new settings to their accounts (bankston). Though the new settings received a lot of applause, they have not gone without criticism. Most experts think that the developers of these settings have only made the situation dire, as users with ill motives will always find their way round (bankston).Overall, the commitment of facebook to protecting its user’s information is questionable.
Facebook avails to its users, many activities that are fun to be involved in, which include discussions, charting and creation of groups. As a result, facebook users spend extra periods in front of their computers thus eating into time reserved for extra curriculum and social activities (Bozarth 56).Therefore most users are addicted. The young generation that has emerged has been characterised by poor one-on-one conversation, impaired speeches and being self-absorbed. These traits are attributable to the enormous time spent online.
The consequences of long hours spent online are far reaching as most students’ grades have diminished greatly. Many account holders on facebook do not divulge their identity. Such persons are faceless on their account and provide minimal information as to their character, background and perspective on major issues; therefore, most friendship resulting from interaction on facebook have roots in stereotypes. Making friends based on stereotypes is inappropriate as the true personality of the person is undisclosed.
Most young people are oblivious of the dangers of such actions. Facebook opponents have criticised it for not doing enough to eliminate faceless members whose accounts look questionable. As any other credible institution, facebook should thoroughly screen its members.
Proficiency of young people in using media whose background information is unknown has startled many media specialist who have called upon media users to be cautious. Critics have further argued that facebook has resulted in a new form of addiction in children because they on average spend six hours online. Children below eighteen are most affected and many calls have advised facebook to limit its membership to only those above eighteen years. This call has brought to the forefront the social responsibility of face book.
In spite of the many flaws, facebook is definitely a social network phenomenon. It has further opened communication lines amid many people given its membership of over 400 million users (Bozarth 55). It has facilitated this by a feature called friend request. The feature enables the invited users to communicate. Face book further diversified the social scene by challenging the dominance of the traditional social media.
No one can assume the impact of facebook as business people who are not members are a liability to the trade. Facebook is very trendy amid young people as result opening avenues for advertisers who target young people. The interaction of people on facebook has resulted in cultural exchange (Bozarth 55). Political movements have also used it to spread political messengers. Facebook has become the best means to reach the younger age band.
Facebook’s main targets were young people, High school and University students, as indicated in the first rollout that targeted this group (Philips). Facebook is a very appealing social complex particularly to University students and teenagers. It allows them to exchange ideas on their lives, interest and on school life.
The social state of facebook and the swiftness at which information dispersed makes it fascinating. There is a false notion among the young naive users that their personal details are secure .This is not the case as their private details get exposed to people who gain illicit access.
Scammers use the illegally obtained data to manipulate the purchasing trends of the users to the benefit of certain organisations. Young people spend a lot of time communicating on facebook and some of the comments made on face book are inappropriate. Furthermore, facebook facilitate the promotion of some appalling believes like masonry. Members of these cults form social groups and use them to foster the values of their cults. These groups target susceptible users and use the site as the platform for their recruitment.
It has contributed considerably to the current state of moral degradation. Issues that generate uproar on debate, get a suitable discussion platform on face book. The discussions elicit some awful comments whose moral uprightness is questionable. Innocent young people read such comments daily; the culmination of a prolonged reading of such appalling comment is youthful people with immoral values. Most of these discussions relate to issue like homosexuality and masonry that are controversial in most society.
Mark devised facebook, a site that has come to dictate communal networking in recent years (Philips).From early on, facebook was faced by success and controversy. Popularity among the youth has led to its hasty growth. Lack of privacy seems to be its major undoing as alterations in such settings only resulted in an uproar.
The administration of this site has heeded calls to put in place settings that will protect the users’ details. In absence of proper security settings facebook has served as an avenue to commit crime such as impersonation, spreading panic and manipulation. To counter these acts the administration should overhaul privacy settings in totality to conform to the solitude legislation.
Besides, the administration should exercise discretion over the members eligible to avoid suspicious individuals. Although, facebook has facilitated easier and cheaper communication to many people, users must be cautious about the members they interact with on the net and reserve time for other activities to avoid addiction. Finally, the administration should receive credit for embracing calls to overhaul their privacy settings.
Bankston, Kevin. New privacy changes: The good, the bad and the ugly. 2009. Web. May 12, 2011.
Bozarth, Jane. Social Media for Trainers: Techniques for Enhancing and Extending Learning .SAN FRANCISCO, CA. John Wiley and sons, 2010. Print.
Philip, Sarah. A brief history of Facebook. The Guardian. 2007. Web. May 12, 2011.