After the recent conviction of a woman in a cyber bullying case that took place on MySpace, many in the blogosphere and elsewhere are mulling how the case might affect their use of social networks.
Why does it matter?
There could be negative implications, he adds, because one reason social networks, forums, and other forms of online communications are so useful in PR is that they allow anonymity among users.
“These are some of the most vibrant corners of the Web, and where a lot of the most popular Web trends come from,” says Bellinger. “So if membership in these areas starts dying off, PR agencies are going to see a lot less fodder out there for good program ideas.”
However, Matthew LeVeque, SVP at The Rogers Group, believes social networks and online communications will continue to grow.
“Most brands and organizations that are utilizing online communications and PR are using common sense and transparency, and are complying with all applicable laws and regulations,” he says.
1. The Pew Internet & American Life Project found 39% of teens who use social networks report being cyber bullied versus 22% who don't use social networks.
2. Pew research also found that 38% of girls ages 12 to 17 reported being cyber bullied, compared to 26% of boys in the same age bracket.
3. In addition, one in eight teens reported to Pew that they had been sent a threatening instant message, e-mail, or text.
4. Social networks around the world had 25% more unique visitors in June 2008 compared to a year earlier, according to ComScore.
5. Twitter is the fastest-growing social media Web site in the US, with 343% growth since September 2007, according to Nielsen statistics.