miércoles, 3 de noviembre de 2010

Social Costs of Gossip

Have you ever thought about the total amount of time people spend on Facebook?
I bet you have felt guilty because you spend too much time on Facebook, catching up with pictures and events. Well, don’t be too worried, because you are not alone. The use of Facebook has been growing exponentially, since its launch from a Harvard dorm room in February of 2004. The number of active users has increased by more than nine percent each month, since its creation through July of 2010, when more than 500 million people were registered as active users, each user with an average of 130 friends.
In terms of use, according to the statistics of the popular social networking website, people spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook. Certainly this is a huge number, but how much is it in terms of one person? Well, it turns out that approximately half of the active users log on any given day, this means that on average each person spends an hour and a half (1 hour 30 min) on this social network every day. So are you contributing to the increase of that number? You don’t have to feel guilty if you come in under that number, are you?
In terms of the federal minimum wage, the time each person spends on this social network is equivalent to US$225 dollars a month or equivalently, believed or not, 7.19% of the U.S. total GDP in 2009. Is this the social cost of gossip?

Source: Facebook

1 comentario:

  1. In an article titled The productivity paradox, Brynjolsson(1993)points at the seeming contradiction between investment in information technologies and productivity figures. Data did not seem to support the assertion that computers make people more efficient. Currently, when almost everyone seem to be a member of Social network sites (SNS), such as Facebook, this concern has taken a new breath. However, some researchers have not looked at how the use of these tools affect their work performance or productivity, but on the contrary, how SNS might benefit psychological well being, social capital, and community attachment.
    Indeed, a study by Steinfield, Ellison and Lampe (2008) found empirical support for the positive effect of SNS use on bridging social capital and self-esteem.
    Chew, LaRose, Steinfield and Velasquez (2010) found that not only SNS use, but also the quality of the interaction, increases community attachment in rural areas.
    In 2007, Ellison, Steinfield and Lampe wrote a now classic study that found how SNS use benefits the accrual of both, bridging and bonding social capital.
    In short, although there are some high costs paid in a specific realm (productivity) the benefits in other areas might as well override those costs.