Mass media is an integral part of our society and today the different forms of mass media have been evolving as technology advances. Given the variation in its forms, individuals and society now have the possibility to choose their preferred medium to communicate.
Photo and Video Sharing Sites
Photo sharing sites are online platforms that allow the publishing or transfer of a user’s digital photos online, thus enabling the user to share them with others (publicly or privately). This function is provided through both websites and applications that facilitate the upload and display of images. The term can also be loosely applied to the use of online photo galleries that are set up and managed by individual users, including photoblogs. A photoblog is a form of photo sharing and publishing in the format of a blog. Photographs are predominant as compared to text. Photo blogging is described as the action of posting photos to a photoblog and this is very common among the millennial generation. There are dozens of quality photo sharing web sites that make the upload and display of your digital photos easy and fun. You can edit them, include them in slide shows, and even set them to music. Examples of photo sharing sites are Picasa, Flickr among others. Video sharing sites assume the same functions above, but here, video are shared. Users can upload, download and distribute their video clips on the website. YouTube is a popular example of video sharing website. It can host a range of interesting videos that appeal to people of all generations.
Voice-Over-Internet Protocol (VoIP)
A Voice-Over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a technology that allows making voice calls using a broadband Internet connection instead of a regular (or analog) phone line. Some VoIP services may only allow calling other people using the same service, but others may allow calling anyone who has a telephone number – including local, long distance, mobile, and international numbers. Also, while some VoIP services only work over your computer or a special VoIP phone, other services allow the use of a traditional phone connected to a VoIP adapter. Skype is an example of VoIP. People can make video calls and can video conference. This tool enables people not only to communicate verbally but visually as well, even though they are far apart. Using Skype connects people closer and they can talk as much as they want, as long as they have an internet connection.
Current Trends in Electronic Media
Social networking services are becoming increasingly popular; Facebook is the most popular social networking site on the web, with over 400 million users worldwide. Social gaming is a prominent trend on social networking sites, and many users are not traditional video game gamers; rather, they are females over the age of 40. Social networking site developers make money by charging users real money for perks or virtual products. Another prominent trend is microblogging. Key events throughout the world are frequently reported first on the microblog Twitter by people who have personal knowledge with the happenings. Twitter is used by business owners to better engage with their clients. Celebrities are well-versed in the media and utilize Twitter to promote great causes. Digital experts believe that in the future, social networking will grow more restricted, with users filtering out trash from unwelcome sources.
The Internet is becoming increasingly exclusive, with membership-only sites catering to specialized populations via subscription newsletters. Apps for smartphones and tablet computers, such as the iPad, are extremely popular, providing customers with multiple shortcuts to their favorite websites, as well as games and services. Location-sharing applications, assisted by GPS technology on modern smartphones, and cross-media applications, such as those that tie up with certain TV shows, celebrities, or music radio stations, are two current trends.