Almost everyone has heard of Facebook and Twitter. You might have heard of Flickr and LinkedIn as well. What is the big deal with these sites these days. These are some of the sites known as social networking sites. But what actually is a social networking site? What separates the social networking sites from other web sites? What makes them so special that people flock to them to communicates and share information?
Social Networking Sites History
The mid 90′s was when the first so-called social networking sites made their entrance across the Internet. It was during this time that you also saw a big growth period for the Internet. Most of the time, on these sites, people were connecting with folks they had known in the past. Sometimes, they were finding out how they could connect to other users on other sites.
Some of these sites included Friendster, which is now very popular in the Philipines as well as MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, Hi5, Orkut and Yahoo! 360. With these sites, they could connect with friends and use some additional features such as sharing photos. Since that time, a variety of additional social networking sites have cropped up, some of which cater to special things such as books, music, video games or meeting new people in various countries.
What Social Networking Sites Do
There are two things that a website must have to be defined as a social networking site:
1). Users must be able to create their own personal profile pages, containing whatever information they want to share about themselves.
2). Users must be able to link to each other and create a list of “friends” or “contacts” who can view each other’s profiles and share social networking information.
A lot of social networking sites offer features far beyond the basics, often based on the specific type of networking the site caters to. For example, a business networking site might let users post resumes or references. A photo sharing site would most likely have advanced image galleries built in, plus ways to rate or discuss other people’s photos. A music-focused site could allow users to automatically upload lists of songs they listen to on their media players. New applications are expanding the capabilities of social networking sites every day, giving us more opportunities to interact with them. This gives us some insight into social networking sites.