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Social Networking

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The Internet and the exploding popularity of smart phones and netbooks have transformed social networking from friends introducing friends to the freedom to contact millions of people around the world. Online social networking generally uses websites that function like an online community. Once you are granted access, you can read the profile pages of other members and contact them—socialize! No longer are you limited to meeting only the people who are in the same place at the same time. You can make a diverse set of contacts because the Internet gives people from all around the world access to the same sites. Many social networking websites focus on particular interests but the biggest, best-known services like Facebook, MySpace and Twitter usually have open memberships—anyone can become a member.

The very scope and openness of social networking that shape its appeal also create some risks like computer viruses and data theft. There is little to prevent people, even online predators, from misrepresenting themselves and their motives. Of course people can do this in person too but you have more ways to judge their honesty and sincerity. When social networking online, use common sense and proceed cautiously.

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