So what exactly is this ?social media? that needs to be controlled?

Our Dear Leader is attempting to go viral with her campaign to control social media because it was social media that killed 50 people in Christchurch.

Let?s start with the Wikipedia definition as, supposedly, the entries on Wikipedia are agreed by mutual consent among all the contributors and editors. (Unless you are discussing global warming – naturally.) Quote.

Social media are interactive computer-mediated technologies that facilitate the creation and sharing of information, ideas, career interests and other forms of expression via virtual communities and networks. The variety of stand-alone and built-in social media services currently available introduces challenges of definition; however, there are some common features:


  1. Social media are interactive Web 2.0 Internet-based applications.
  2. User-generated content, such as text posts or comments, digital photos or videos, and data generated through all online interactions, is the lifeblood of social media.
  3. Users create service-specific profiles for the website or app that are designed and maintained by the social media organization.
  4. Social media facilitate the development of online social networks by connecting a user’s profile with those of other individuals or groups. End quote.

Point 1 covers just about everything these days.

Point 2 mops up TVNZ as they regularly broadcast user-generated content with videos in the news bulletin or pictures on the weather segment. Point 2 also covers the MSM sites that allow comments on their pages.

Point 3 picks up several of the MSM sites that require a specific login to their site to enable commenting. The Disqus platform used by Whaleoil commenters is not ?service-specific.?

This leaves Point 4 as the real distinctive of social media. There is no doubt that Whaleoil has created an online network of people who ?know? one another via their comments. Read Backchat for social interactions between Oilers. Heck, some of them even met in person at the occasional Oilers? Sump.

But Whaleoil does not facilitate sub-groups or side channel communication between readers and commenters. Whaleoil does not provide a mechanism for me to PM Wibble or KatB. [PM = private message – for those not on social sites.]

However the case can be made that blogs are indeed social media, despite the fact that people tend to put them in a category all on their own these days. Blogs are one of the oldest forms of social media that dominated the web long before we were friending and following everyone on social networks. The key features that make blogs part of social media are their user accounts, comment sections, and blog networks. WordPress, and Blogger are examples of big blog platforms that have very active community blog networks.

Perhaps the real point is the difference between social media and social networking. These terms, social media and social networking, are often used interchangeably. Although the difference is subtle, they’re not the same. Social networking is really a subcategory of social media. Quote.

The easiest way to understand the difference between social media and social networking is by thinking about the terms media and networking separately. Media refers to the information you’re actually sharing ? whether it’s a link to an article, a video, an animated GIF, a PDF document, a simple status update or anything else.

Networking, on the other hand, has to do with who your audience is and the relationships you have with them. Your network can include people like friends, relatives, colleagues, anyone from your past, current customers, mentors and even complete strangers.

They certainly overlap, which is why it gets confusing. For example, you can share media with your social network to gather likes and comments ? a form of social networking. But you can also just upvote a link on Reddit, which is a social media platform, to help out the community and give your say in the matter without any intention of building relationships with other users.

Still confused? Try to think of social media like fruit. Apples, bananas, oranges, grapes, berries, melons and pineapples are all part of the broader fruit category the same way that social networking, social news, social bookmarking, wikis, blogs and private web messaging are part of the broader social media category. End quote.


But of course our Dear Leader understands all the subtleties of this field, comrades, and we can be sure that she will adjudicate correctly on our behalf, for our own good and in our best interests. After all, she represents the most kindnessest, opennessest and tranparentest government we have ever been fortunate to have had.