Friday, February 27, 2009

What is Social Media?

So far I've been thinking, searching and reading a lot and have found some interesting sites and information. What I haven't found however is a simple, step-by-step guide to understanding social media and how best to utilize it. With that in mind I'm going to approach this blog a little like a classroom (where I am a student too!) and start out with the ABC's and work my way up.

That being said I think that we (ok, I mean me) need to get a clear definition of Social Media. I'm going to write below a short synopsis of my personal understanding of the definition of Social Media based on my research.

Please feel free to comment and criticize but remember I'm going for simplicity here!

Social Media Definition:

1) New technologies enabling anyone to collaboratively create, spread, and access information.

2) Communication in “traditional” media such as newspapers, books, radio and television can’t be altered once it is created, whereas, in social media content can evolve and change after its initial creation. Example: you can leave a comment on a blog or change an entry to Wikipedia.

3) Social media is changing how people interact with and relate to each other (let's talk about impact later!).

And my favourite, simple definition:

4) "Social media is something we engage in rather than consume"

(from a comment by Michael O'Connor Clarke taken from a posting on ProPR).

So, it seems Social Media has 4 main parts:



Below I've posted a video link to Common Craft where Social Media is explained in a simple,entertaining and informative video.

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