Week 12

Week 12 – Topics

Social Media
Design assignment: Bring in Photoshop file with design comp for final project. You must finish with design by week 12.
Review and lab time

What is Social Media?

The best way to understand a new media is to compare it to what’s come before? So, what kind of media do you have lying around your house? Probably these:

A box of photos.
Physical, paper mail and catalogs.
Yellow Pages.

What are some attributes of “social media” or “new media” that are different than any of the “old media” above?

  1. The media above cannot be changed. A newspaper can’t magically change its stories, even if society decides something in them is incorrect. A blog can be updated for all readers nearly instantly.
  2. You can interact with a blog. You can leave a comment. With the above you can’t interact at all.
  3. You can get some sense of the popularity of content in real time. How many comments does each post get? How many links does each post get? I can see in WordPress how much traffic each item gets. You can visit Digg to see voting on a blog’s items. Or, TechMeme to see which blog items got most links in the past few hours. None of the media above do you have a clue about the granular popularity of any of the items until much later after best seller lists are published.
  4. With the “new media” you can look archives and see all posts. Try doing that with a newspaper. Yeah, you can, if you pay the San Jose Mercury News a fee. But it’s not as easy as it is here.
  5. On a blog you can mix media. A post could contain text, audio, video, or photos. Not so on newspaper or magazines.
  6. On a blog you don’t need to convince a committee to publish. Not true with other media forms. Imagine you walked into CNN and said “hey, I have some cool video, can you publish it?”
  7. The new media is infinite. The media above all has limitations in terms of either length (a TV station only has 24 hours in a day — over on YouTube, I guarantee they publish a lot more than 24 hours of video in a day) or in quantity (try to convince USA Today to publish a 40,000 word article, or, 500 articles on the same topic).
  8. The new media is able to be syndicated and linkable and easily reused. you can link to your media here, for instance, a few seconds after you publish it. Try doing THAT with any of the above media. Not to mention, your words kick into an RSS feed which you can then republish using something like Google Reader, if you’d like, or you can copy a sentence out of a post, paste it into your own blog, and say something about what I just said.
  9. The new media can be mashed up with data from other services. Many people are putting widgets on their blogs that display various things from places they don’t control. That’s impossible in the older media above.

By “social media” or “new media” we’re talking about Internet media that has the ability to interact with it in some way.

Above material from What is social media?., Scobleizer 16 February 2007

Examples of social media software applications include:


  • Blogs: Blogger, LiveJournal, Open Diary, TypePad, WordPress, Vox, ExpressionEngine
  • Micro-blogging / Presence applications: Twitter, Plurk, Pownce, Jaiku
  • Social networking: Bebo, Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Orkut, Skyrock, Hi5, Ning, Elgg
  • Social network aggregation: FriendFeed
  • Events: Upcoming, Eventful, Meetup.com


  • Wikis: Wikipedia, PBwiki, wetpaint
  • Social bookmarking (or Social tagging) (Golder & Huberman 2006): Delicious, StumbleUpon, Google Reader, CiteULike
  • Social news: Digg, Mixx, Reddit
  • Opinion sites: epinions, Yelp, City-data.com


  • Photo sharing: Flickr, Zooomr, Photobucket, SmugMug
  • Video sharing: YouTube, Vimeo, sevenload
  • Livecasting: Ustream.tv, Justin.tv, Stickam, bizbuzztour.com
  • Audio and Music Sharing: imeem, The Hype Machine, Last.fm, ccMixter

Reviews and Opinions

  • Product Reviews: epinions.com, MouthShut.com
  • Q&A: Yahoo! Answers, WikiAnswers
  • Employer Reviews, Jobeehive.com


  • Media & Entertainment Platforms: Cisco Eos
  • Virtual worlds: Second Life, The Sims Online, Forterra
  • Game sharing: Miniclip, Kongregate

Above material from Social Media, Wikipedia

What social media do you use?


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Instructor for Interactive Design 01