Whenever I watch something on Netflix, I’m always swayed by its star-rating, and as a result, I always submit my own after I’ve watched it. I’ve actually come to rely on these ratings so much, that if a movie or tv show has less than a solid 4 out of 5 stars, I won’t even watch it. Some of the best series I’ve seen on Netflix were ones I’ve never heard of (often foreign-language, which is why I wouldn’t have heard of them) that I was surprised to see had a really good star rating which influenced my decision.
This is a good example of the pervasive reach of social platforms in our everyday life. I’m interacting with other Netflix users through the ratings system and it’s improving my experience and driving my choices.
Even traditional forms of media like newspapers have taken their act to the Internet, where users can easily read, share, and comment on news articles. Many live format television shows include social media interaction in real-time, or even refer to their users’ communications at a later date to react to their comments.
It seems as though all media is basically social media, with at least some form of social integration. So why are we still calling it “social media”, and not just “media”? Well, I believe this term will eventually become obsolete, as it’s starting to sound outdated already, and having typed it roughly a hundred times for the purposes of this course, I think its time is up.
Whilst trying to think of something that isn’t social (Books? No, books have become social now too) I’ve realized that everything is available in digital format through apps or otherwise, and we can act or react upon them all.
Even the terms used to describe social media tools have evolved over the years, with words like “network” and “channel” replacing such terms as “portal” and “gateway”. This suggests that we no longer think of our social accounts as satellites of our main website, but instead they are part of the larger picture of our brand. And our brand most likely includes an interactive component to participate in the world around us.
Ironically, I think that the evolution of social media will eventually make courses and programs such as this one obsolete. If everything will be represented digitally with interactive capacities, Social Media will be less and less of a mysterious specialty, and more of an early-ingrained way of life.