More than a decade ago we saw the birth of social media, and it already seems as though they have been always been part of our lives. Young people in particular can no longer do without social media. Recent research among students reveals that especially Facebook, Pinterest and Whatsapp take up most time. Social media take up over two hours per day of time.
The social media landscape is ever expanding, which explains why there is a trend of us looking for platforms that match our profile. Providers of social media platforms cater to this need. There are platforms that mainly target youths:
- https://www.lego.com/nl-be, a platform created by Lego focusing on children aged between 7 and 12.
- https://musical.ly/en-US/, a platform specially aimed at girls aged between 8 and 18.
- https://houseparty.com, a platform on which you can have video chats with a maximum of eight friends.
There are also platforms for adult, special-interest groups:
- https://www.researchgate.net, where scientists meet each other.
- www.medium.com, which targets the business reader and where high-value articles are published and read.
Moreover, we also see that social messaging apps have really taken off. Personal affairs are no longer shared on the standard social media, but through apps, such as Whatsapp, Kik and Telegram. Because artificial intelligence is embedded in these apps, they become smarter and dig deeper into your private life. Imagine that your chatbot sends you the following message one day: ‘I see that it’s your mother-in-law’s birthday next week. Shall I order a bunch of white roses and have it delivered to her?’ Whether we should be happy with this is something everybody has to decide for themselves, but the fact remains that such chatbots are already here, and they are here to stay. There are even chatbots that will automatically place posts based on your daily activities on the social media channel you select. You do not have to do this yourself anymore.
The future of social media will greatly influence our personal future. Social media will dominate our lives, the way we interact, the way we use gadgets, everything. There will be a shift from mass social media to ever more individualised social media. The advances made in artificial intelligence will play an increasingly important role in this. There is no way of predicting what the future will bring us exactly, but the above trends and developments are unmistakable. It is up to us to remain in the driver’s seat and decide what features we want to use and which not.