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The media influence on the society has grown rapidly in the last 50 years with the advancement of technology from telegraph to internet. Social networks have been the chief medium for spreading information since ages and recently, they are becoming increasingly vital since online communities of unprecedented size are being formed. For instance, ICTs have enabled a social transformation; which has changed the influence landscape, which dramatically impacts on both economic and social parameters.
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According to International Institute of Sustainable Development (2010), ICTs have changed the behaviour and structure of individuals, communities, organizations. Geared by the advancement and adoption of social networking applications, people are becoming aware of the power of interconnected relationships and influence of connections over various aspects of their lives.
Studies indicate that social support and social networking offer benefits from additional buoyancy to greater life satisfction to also reduction of health problems. Staying in an interconnected world, the blend of socialization through the internet is helping in the provision of measurable information concerning the manner in which group norms can work together in forming the basis of human culture and productivity with society, and this is what Nicholas Christakis, Professor of Health Care Policy, Sociology and Medicine at Harvard University calls 'the value of social networks'.
The internet evolution is continuing with its influential shift from the traditional measures towards building a more democratic 'community of choice' power structure, with predictions of relationship damage being a thing of the past. Branching thickest of human social networks are shaping people's tastes, purchases, health, voting patterns, and happiness. Social networks have also become the major form of organization for social processes, driven by informational capitalism, managed by the organization of power and governance, and aare shaped by values and challenges of social movements (Wellman, 1999).
Online communities engender a sense of community that is moving beyond just interaction to include emotional attachment, and the more individuals are online, the more they relate to one another. Social networking also makes individuals to think that they are in control of their lives yet most of them do not act in an individualistic manner. As affirmed by Christakis, & Fowler (2009) in the book; Connected: the Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives, "the world is governed by 'three degrees of influence', i.e. your friends, friends, friends who indirectly influences your everyday actions & emotions". In this case therefore we realize that social networking is not generationally specific.
I may conclude by quoting the words of a leading sociologist Barry Wellman who once said that "Social networking sites have brought social networks into people's consciousness".