2.4 Positives

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A cyberpsychology research study conducted by Australian researchers demonstrated that a number of positive psychological outcomes are related to Facebook use, establishing that people can derive a sense of social connectedness and belongingness in the online environment. Importantly, this online social connectedness was associated with lower levels of depression and anxiety, and greater levels of subjective wellbeing.

Social and political applications

Social networking sites have recently showed a value in social and political movements. In the Egyptian revolutionFacebook and Twitter both played an allegedly pivotal role in keeping people connected to the revolt.

On the flip side, social networks enable government authorities to easily identify, and repress, protestors and dissidents.

Social networks and grassroots organizing

Social networks are being used by activists; as a means of low-cost grassroots organizing.

The August 2011 England riots were considered to have escalated and been fuelled by this type of grassroots organization.

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Crowdsourcing applications

Crowdsourcing process is often used to subdivide tedious work or to fund-raise startup companies and charities, and can also occur offline.

Notifications on websites

There has been a trend for social networking sites to send out only “positive” notifications to users. For example sites such as Facebook will not send notifications to users when they are removed from a person’s friends list.

This allows users to purge undesirables from their list extremely easily and often without confrontation since a user will rarely notice if one person disappears from their friends list.

It also enforces the general positive atmosphere of the website without drawing attention to unpleasant happenings such as friends falling out, rejection and failed relationships.




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