Introduction This is a PowerPoint that covers the many things that I discovered while exploring the inner depths of Tumblr and how the usage of the site and other forms of social networking do not actually make somebody less sociable, but in fact creates more friendships and helps to make people more connected in their every day lives.
WHAT DID I SET OUT TO DISCOVER? I wanted people to see that even though frequent users of Tumblr may spend a lot of time on the computer, it in no way affects their levels of sociability. In fact, I have found that through my research and the research of others, that Tumblr and other forms of social media are great ways to meet new people and to interact.
THE SUBJECT OF MY RESEARCH For my research, I got into contact with various people that I knew who used Tumblr for their own personal enjoyment. However I mainly focused on one person who wished to remain anonymous for the sake of privacy. This subject is currently attending high school so they had experience trying to fit into an environment that some might call socially based.
OBSERVATION AND ITS IMPORTANCE I really wanted observation to be a big point to my paper. I was inspired to do this after reading a paper by Sara Shinton called #betterconnected-a perspective on social media. Throughout her entire paper, she made sure to include her own personal observations about what she had seen when she was studying people who use these various social media formats. It made me feel as if I was actually a part of her experience and it actually made me want to read her research even more.
WHAT DID I SEE DURING MY OBSERVATION? What I saw was someone who was using Tumblr in the exact way that I thought they would. This person was using this website to get into contact with people that they felt were friends. I also found that the subject was using the site to discover other people that they werent yet friends with.
FITTING IN One of the reasons for my subject using the website was actually something that I found to be quite interesting. They had recently moved to this country and being able to use Tumblr did two things. It allowed them to keep in contact with people that they knew back home and it also allowed them to make new friends while they are in a new place.
FITTING IN CONTINUED… Jessie Donaghey wrote a paper on this exact topic. She talked about how great the numerous amounts of social networking sites are for international students. One of the main points that were brought up were the ways that these sites can make a person feel like they fit in when they have been put into a new environment.
WHY DO SOME PEOPLE LOOK DOWN ON SOCIAL NETWORKING? The reason why some people view social networking as a negative aspect of some people lives is because of the distractions it can cause from reality. There are some scenarios where people who use websites like Tumblr find that they go onto the site constantly. In doing this, it may restrict the amount of face to face interactions that one might have in a day.
WHAT I FOUND TO BE THE TRUTH What I found to be truth is that when people used Tumblr, it actually helped to make them more social and also helped to assist them in feeling more accepted in their environment. The misconceptions that are often thought of by people who do not use these websites were proven wrong for the most part by discovering this.
TRUTH CONTINUED… This research was backed up by a paper written by Patti Valkenburg who had said that 30% of the adolescents perceived online communication as more effective than offline communication in self-disclosing intimate information.(Valkenburg 271) This showed me that I wasnt the only one who had seen people who found these websites to be a more comfortable option.
PUBLISHED INACCURACIES In 2008, A study was conducted by RJ Van den Eijnden. The research paper went into depths about how frequent usage of social networking websites can cause an increase in compulsive internet usage which would in turn cause the user to degenerate in a both physical and psychological manner.
INACCURACIES CONTINUED… This to me was something that I did not notice as the subject in my studies seemed to use the internet in a constant and normal manner. What I did agree with in this paper however, is the researchers opinion on social media usage and loneliness. The final point made was that they found these sites to be a great way to make new friends and be social.
CONTINUED… Another article I felt had some inaccuracies to would have to be one written by Deborah McBride. In this paper, entitled Risks and Benefits of Social Media, she goes to great depth on the negative effects that social networking sites can have on a person and how it can effect the people around them.
CONTINUED… This was a paper that I felt was incredibly biased. Even though she may have made some good points on the negative effects, she made no attempt to document any positive effects that she may have noticed from the research she did. When Writing a document, I agree that the author should have a clear mind when it comes to their opinion, but they should still talk about the views of both sides.
SO WHAT HAS BEEN LEARNED FROM THIS EXPERIENCE? I have learned that Tumblr can be an excellent tool for integrating yourself into a new environment. This is done through the new people that you meet online. I have also learned that this website in absolutely no way causes a deficiency in sociability. It actually helps to increase the chances of a person becoming more social. People should try and give Tumblr a second chance before turning away from it.
WORKS CITED Donaghey, Jessie. "Social media for international students – its not all about Facebook" Library Management (2010): 106-119. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. April 1, 2014 McBride, Deborah. "Risks and Benefits of Social Media for Children and Adolescents" Library Management (2011): 498-499. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. April 1, 2014 Shinton, Sara. "#betterconnected-a perspective on social media." Library Management (2012): 1987-1989. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. April 1, 2014 Valkenburg, Patti. "Preadolescents' and adolescents' online communication and their closeness to friends. Library Management (2007): 267-277. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. April 1, 2014 Van den Eijnden, RJ. "Online communication, compulsive Internet use, and psychosocial well-being among adolescents: a longitudinal study. Library Management (2008): 655-665. Literary Reference Center Plus. Web. April 1, 2014