Social networks connect people at low cost; this
can be beneficial for entrepreneurs and small businesses looking to expand
their contact base. These networks often act as a customer relationship
management tool for companies selling products and services. Companies can also
use social networks for advertising in the form of banners and text ads. Since
businesses operate globally, social networks can make it easier to keep in
touch with contacts around the world.
Social networks are beginning to be adopted by
healthcare professionals as a means to manage institutional knowledge,
disseminate peer to peer knowledge and to highlight individual physicians and
institutions. The advantage of using a dedicated medical social networking site
is that all the members are screened against the state licensing board list of
practitioners. The role of social networks is especially of interest to
pharmaceutical companies who spend approximately "32 percent of their
marketing dollars" attempting to influence the opinion leaders of social
Languages, nationalities and academia
Various social networking sites have sprung
up catering to different languages and countries. The popular site
Facebook has been cloned for various countries and languages and some
specializing in connecting students and faculty.
Social networks for social good
Several websites are beginning to tap into the
power of the social networking model for social good. Such models may be highly
successful for connecting otherwise fragmented industries and small
organizations without the resources to reach a broader audience with interested
and passionate users. Users benefit by interacting with a like-minded community
and finding a channel for their energy and giving.
networks currently charge money for membership. In part, this may be because
social networking is a relatively new service, and the value of using them has
not been firmly established in customers' minds. Companies such as MySpace and
Facebook sell online advertising on their site. Hence, they are seeking large
memberships, and charging for membership would be counter productive. Some
believe that the deeper information that the sites have on
each user will allow much better targeted advertising than any other site can
currently provide. Sites are also seeking other ways to make money, such as by
creating an online marketplace or by selling professional information and
social connections to businesses.
On large social networking services, there have
been growing concerns about users giving out too much personal information and
the threat of sexual predators. Users of these services need to be aware of
data theft or viruses. However, large services, such as MySpace, often work with
law enforcement to try to prevent such incidents. In addition, there is a
perceived privacy threat in relation to placing too much personal information
in the hands of large corporations or governmental bodies, allowing a profile
to be produced on an individual's behavior on which decisions, detrimental to
an individual, may be taken.
Social network services are increasingly being
used in legal and criminal investigations. Information posted on sites such as
MySpace and Facebook, has been used by police, probation, and university
officials to prosecute users of said sites. In some situations, content posted
on MySpace has been used in court.
Answer the Questions. Write the letter of the correct answer in the answer black.
1 According to the text, social networks .......
A. are being used by businesses for marketing.
B. are about friendships.
C. can damage business reputations.
D. advertise on business web sites.
2 Why do advertisers like social nework sites?
A. They are cost-effective to advertise on.
B. Detailed information on each user allows targeted ads.
C. Most users have high disposable income.
D. They can influence consumer behaviour.
3 What does the expression 'sprung up' in paragraph 4 mean?
A. everybody is trying to copy Facebook
B. the development of social networking is unplanned
C. there has been rapid development of social networking sites
D. social networking works in all languages
4 What does the word 'Few' at the beginning of paragraph 6 mean?
A. Hardly any
B. Not any
5 What should users not do on social networks?
A. upload copyrighted music
B. download viruses
C. contact predators
D. be too free with their personal information
6 What does the word 'deeper' in paragraph 6 mean?
A. more spiritual
B. more detailed
C. more profound
D. more emphatic
7 Personal information on social network sites.......
A. can be used in court
B. gives a good description of the user's personality
C. is sold to the government
D. is translated into many languages
8 Social networking is great for ......
A. people who write too much information about themselves
B. academic organisations
C. groups of people separated over wide areas
D. the law enforcement agencies