The population of the world right now is about 7,115,393,380 and the population in the US is about 315, 816,000. This means that there are about 6 billion people living outside the US. According to the article from USA Today about 80% of the world’s population uses the Internet.
Every country is different and not every country is a fan of Facebook, like Brazil and Russia. Social media is all over the world and some countries do not use it for the same purposes as America.
I remember when I moved to the US I was always getting e-mails on Hi5 from my friends in Mexico, and I never knew what it was, I only knew what MySpace and Facebook were. I also remember that I came here using the website Photolog. All of my friends were using this website but no one in the US knew it, because they were using MySpace. Did you ever use another website aside from MySpace or Facebook when you were young?
In class we talked about how in Africa the people are using the Internet and mobile phones in different ways than here in America. Having a cellphone for an African person is more of a necessity than a luxury.
They use their phones for banking, activism, education, entertainment, disaster management, agriculture, and health. It actually reminded me of Mexico- mobile phones have become a necessity there instead of a luxury. Even though people in the United States use their phones similarly, like for mobile banking, it’s more for convenience than necessity. Infrastructures in the major cities like Mexico City and Guadalajara are more maintained, but when you are in the rural areas, simple amenities like banking and access to a doctor become more difficult. Using mobile phones, similarly to how they are used in Africa, allows for people further from the cities to be more connected and in control of their lives than they would be otherwise. Do you think it is positive that most of their lives depend on their mobile phones?
Another way that mobile phones and social media have been used is for activism. During the Tunisian and the Egyptian revolutions social media played a major role. People were taking pictures, and videos of the riots and putting them on public social medias like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and blogs.
The use of social media was so big during the revolutions that President Mubarak cracked down on the media, and consequently took down the Internet too.
Social media is the new way to communicate with the world. If a revolution sparks in a small town in South America the world will know about it in minutes because for some people the first thing they think to do when a big event happens is to put it on Facebook or Twitter.
The same thing happened with the bombings at the Boston Marathon this past month. Minutes after the bombs exploded there were tweets about it.
Social Media outside the United States is as big as here even though in some countries the internet is used for other things, like instead of updating your status about how you did on your finals someone in Africa is probably texting the number of his medicine pills to make sure they are legitimate.