STAFF REPORT ISB: With the wider dimension of Internet, the social media has emerged as a major multiple instrument in quick and cost-effective dissemination of information of choice across the world without devising any sophisticated campaigns and ensuring economic stability.
Various options of online media like Facebook, Youtube, Skype, Twitter, are too much popular across the world to maintain social interactions, exchange ideas, innovations, information, proposals, business modules, business activities or outsourcing of projects, education, teaching and enhancing awareness multiple issues.
Presently, academics, scholars and researchers in the developed world are busy researching this new field of accessible online media.
According to the International Asian Research Journals study China stood first among the worlds top 20 tech-savvy countries, India at third and Pakistan at 12th place in 2012.
With the changing trends in Pakistan, social media is another popular model in elite and urban areas. This medium is cost-effective and allows an individual to be a writer, reporter, composer, commentator, editor, broadcaster, and thus opinion maker at the same time.
Among its South Asian neighbours, Pakistans Facebook penetration rate (3.4 percent) is exceeded only by Indias (3.8 percent) and Sri Lankas (5.8 percent) yet is significantly lower than that of Tunisia (26 percent) and Egypt (11 percent).
In Pakistan as many as 121 TV channels, over 500 regular dailies and over 800 periodicals, 138 commercial FM radio channels, 64 Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) stations, and 34 PBC-owned FM channels are working to channelize information to local masses and the world as well.
However, the fundamental difference between media in the West and in Pakistan can be found in the pattern of progress. In the West, society transformed first and gradually steered the growth of media. While in Pakistan, the media has taken the lead and is striving to help transform the state and society which is just like putting the cart before the horse.
According to statistics, 31 million internet users including 11 million Facebook users, two million Twitter users and hundreds of thousands of bloggers are registered in Pakistan, who are in regular interaction with each other but also with the outer world.
Since the ICT boom has also revolutionized the media, the social media has surfaced carrying a lot of openings for individuals of all stages from education, learning, innovations to business opportunities.
Experts say that social networks have become a crucial part of many of us. We dont even notice this but as soon as we open our desktops or laptops to access the web, we sub-consciously open our favorite social network just to see about the updates received. Knowledge is the key to using new technologies and scholars and education experts agree that success in the 21st century is going to be increasingly relied on media and technological literacy.
“Social media has emerged as a potential source between individuals, companies business groups of local and international alike to closely interact with each other and take benefit out of it,” remarked Abdul Samad Khan, an Islamabad-based factory owner and runs a blogger.
He said that the use of social media to share and engage with others continues to grow at an astounding rate, so it would be wise for any business to develop and implement a sustainable social media strategy in order to successfully take advantage of this rapidly changing environment
It has been positively observed that teachers often take advantage of students social networking abilities to create class blogs, discussion forums, videos, and more. By collaborating with other students and teachers through online social networking, children are able to build stronger school communities.
The experts are of the view that since social media is cost effective and quick option of communication, Pakistanis who have limited resources can exploit this option to enhance particularly their business activities in terms of securing international outsources projects.