Online Communication Among Youth Essay

728 words - 3 pages

Technology has provided people with the means to do things that would other wise be impossible. However, while technology has provided the ability to communicate with people halfway across the world, some believe it has limited the interaction with those who are closest. Yahoo, MSN and AOL are not only top e-mail providers but also offer 'real time' messaging, or instant messaging. Instant messaging has far replaced e-mail as a form of communicating, especially among youth. According to a 2005 study done by Pew Internet and the American Life Project on the social impact of the Internet, 59 percent of individuals under the age of 30 were more likely to instant message. This was in contrast to those over 30, who used instant messaging at a rate of 33 percent.

College students and younger have grown up in the era of Facebook. Facebook is an online social network that allows you to communicate with friends, meet people you do not know and now it offers a new instant messaging system. This new system is called Facebook Chat. It allows you to see who is currently using Facebook and enables you to chat with them over the Facebook website. For the first time, the site will release a chat system so friends can type back and forth instantly. Because Facebook users already have lists of friends, they won't need to build buddy lists. At the bottom right of any Facebook page, users can click an "Online Friends" button that will indicate which friends are available to chat. Facebook Chat only allows for one-to-one conversations. Users will be able to view recent conversations, but the chats won't be logged permanently, and users will be able to clear that chat history any time. Facebook users will also have the option of keeping the conversation on the bottom of the screen or creating a pop-up window they can move. A chat window will also display Mini-Feed stories, which are notices concerning other friends' Facebook activities.

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