Social networks are a very powerful tool that can generate change in the behavior of the people who use them.
For example, brands can use social media to gain new customers or to persuade their loyal customers to buy a new product, and even entire industries can become more popular through their social media presence.
However, the power of social networks is not limited to the world of marketing or sales.
In recent years we have seen firsthand how social media has had an effect on other aspects of human life. Social media movements have sparked new conversations around various issues of social justice and racial inequality through movements like #blacklivesmatter and #stopasianhate.
These are just a few examples of how social media can have a direct impact on social problems in general.
According to the German philosopher and sociologist Jürgen Habermas, the public sphere consists of a group of citizens who meet to discuss general and varied topics. Places where discussion platforms existed included cafes, squares, universities, public places, clubs, etc. Technologies such as television and radio were created and caused mutual and group interactions to be replaced by a one-way interaction model where the information came from the top-down and did not call for participation. This weakened the dialogues and discussions of various issues by social movements and members of society as a whole.
Social networks have become the new cafes or clubs, where thanks to the ability of users to participate in the creation of content, social movements have found a new home. The public sphere model has gone back to being one where people can interact and share ideas but in a new form. Not only this, but social networks give these social movements the opportunity to become something bigger, reach more people, and thus create a greater impact. Social media creates opportunities for engagement, such as increasing turnout at protests or supporting fundraising campaigns, which broaden mobilization, thus helping to scale movement efforts.
In conclusion, it is important to understand the power of persuasion and communication that social networks make possible in order to use them in such a way as to favor, not only a business or company but also the population in general.
Consciously thinking about what we communicate and how we do it through the networks will make us cultured professionals who care about the world in which we live.