A social network is a platform or service that enables users to set up public profiles in whole or in part, share content, and connect with other users based on common interests, life experiences, or personal connections.
Since its emergence in the mid-1990s, social media has become an important and undoubtedly integral part of people’s daily lives, covering half of the world’s population. The emergence of social media is not surprising because social networks as a phenomenon have many benefits and remarkable features.
First and foremost, social media can connect friends, families, and communities, regardless of distance, providing an opportunity for real-time correspondence. Second, it facilitates the exchange of information and ideas, and facilitates communication and other forms of expression. Social networks provide entertainment through online content and enable the creation of communities around common interests.
Finally, social media can be a tool for boosting a business, allowing it to reach a broader audience and build a stronger online presence. In the 21st century, social networks are an important opportunity for marketers seeking to attract, interact with, and acquire customers.
The current state of social networking in Web2, the web we know today, is complex and controversial. On the one hand, they play an important role in shaping public opinion, driving political discourse, and connecting people around the world; On the other hand, social media faces increasing challenges, such as privacy concerns. For example, centralized social networks are widely known to make money by selling consumer data. The public is becoming increasingly aware of the risks associated with sharing personal and sensitive information on social networks and requires greater confidentiality and control over their data.
Monopolizing the social media space is another hot issue. A few dominant companies, such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, control a large portion of the social media market and user data. As a result, they face increasing criticism of their power and influence.
Censorship, and suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, is also a challenge. Governments in countries like China and North Korea, along with major social networks Web2, can monitor content or block any account on the platforms.
Also, social media platforms are a constant topic for increased regulation. Governments around the world are strengthening their regulatory oversight of social media in response to concerns about data confidentiality, election interference, and the spreading of fake news, harmful and misleading content.
Moreover, the business model that relies on advertising and data collection in social media is under scrutiny as concerns about data privacy and the spread of misinformation continue to grow.