Sun. Jan 22nd, 2023

Developments in social media

Unlike the earliest days of the Internet, the modern World Wide Web isn’t primarily full of content created by designers – it’s full of content created by users.

For example, before the WWW, there were books published on an annual basis called the Encyclopedia Britannica – these books contained all of the information an average person may want to look up.

As the Internet and computers evolved, these books became digital – first as software supplied on CD-ROMs that the user could install, and then fully online. However, they were limited to the content that the publisher decided to include, and they cost money.

Wikipedia changed all of this: the content is user generated – that is, users can log on to the Wikipedia site, and add or amend existing articles. This opens it up to allow it to contain far more content than any commercial reference every could. It also opens up the potential for abuse of the system – once the writing is outsourced, how do you know whether the information is accurate or not?

Why this is relevant

Social media is, relatively speaking, a new technology. MySpace is one of the original social media sites, alongside Facebook.

The Facebook of the 2020’s is a very different beast to the Facebook of the early 2010s. For instance, Facebook now shows targetted advertising, which it didn’t previously. It has a mobile app – which it didn’t before. Advances in technology have allowed for new ways to post information – uploading video is now easy. Adding special effects, or interactive content is easy. All of these are tools which have been created and added as the platforms evolve.

In addition, a whole plethora of other social media systems now exist:

  • TikTok
  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Snapchat
  • Twitter

Each of these works in a slightly different manner, and targets different demographics.


Target audience – a description of the intended audience for a product. This might include details about age range, gender, ethnicity, interests and so on.