December 1st. 2011
The Culture of Facebook
America is melting pot of many different cultures. Culture can be broken down into many aspects that can be studied and researched. Based on research such as field notes, interviews, and surveys, conclusions can be drawn about a particular cultural aspect. In Have a Little Faith Mitch Albom explores two religious cultures and two individuals, The Reb and Henry. In this short story Mitch comes to a conclusion that faith is something higher than himself (1). In addition to Have a Little Faith, the book Ancient Futures also studies a culture. The author, Helen Norberg-Hodge studies the Ladakh culture for years and concludes that western cultures can learn a lot form the Ladakhis (2). Both Mitch Albom and Helena Norberg-Hodge have inspired me to study an interesting culture of my own. For my ethnography I chose to study the most popular social networking site in the world, Facebook. The Facebook culture inspired me to write ethnography because I thought it would be interesting to find out information about a site I use on a daily basis.
For those who don’t know, social networking is the use of a dedicated web site to communicate informally with other members of the site, by posting messages, photographs, videos, etc. (3). The most popular social networking site in the world is Facebook. It provides its users with a means for representing their identities in the digital world. Originally called, “thefacebook”, was founded in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg in a Harvard University dorm room. This site became an instant hit and now seven years later it has over 800 million active users (4). The popularity and users have increased dramatically over the years, but why is this? For my ethnography research I observed and interviewed four active Facebook users, two males and two females. I was able to find explanations to help me better understand the Facebook phenomenon. The Facebook culture helps you connect and...