A Lack of Social Media and Its Effect on Technological Development, Reception, and Use

Meg Lybbert

Abstract


This research project demonstrates how an absence of social media during the early and mid-twentieth century affected the development, use, and reception of the computer and the Internet. Much has been written about the development of the computer and the Internet, as well as human-computer interaction and the differences between mass media and social media. However, little research has been done regarding the relationship between all three topics. The contribution made by this research project would serve to explain how closely the three topics are intertwined and provide a better understanding of current and historical relationships between people and the digital tools used to connect with other individuals. Research was conducted through investigations of the scholarly journal database as well as printed scholarly materials and historical accounts. The conclusions of this research indicate that a lack of social media created an environment in which individuals and developers worked with one another in close proximity to build the first computers and the beginnings of the Internet. Recognizing the importance of collaboration and social interaction, those individuals then adapted the use of networked machines to work together at the same time in different places. Those individuals also began to experiment with the way that humans and computers would interact. However, the general public took significantly more time to adapt computers for socializing, originally using the computers and Internet more frequently as an office tool or as a way of accessing the mass media. Different user interfaces used by the general public reflect the way the general public used computer and Internet technology over time. The results of this project will be discussed within the context of User Interaction Design and the history of technology and the media.

Keywords


Internet; Social Media; Mass Media

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