Social Media Future Implications

In 2012 Heidi Cohen highlighted two implications of the future of social media—one in business, and the other in privacy.

The first, Cohen saw businesses continuing to expand their social media engagements to include the organization’s workers’ involvement. Moreover, Cohen saw social media engagement involving senior management oversight and extending into operational processes.

According to Jeanne Meister, Researcher, Consultant and speaker on the future workplace it’s not a matter of if, but when brands will begin engaging with social media if they want a competitive advantage.

Soon will be the day when other brands adapt much in the same way MasterCard has. Master Card moved from seeing social media as a work place threat to seeing it as benefiting their revised business plan, “Then in 2009, MasterCard CEO challenged the entire company to transform from a 45-year-old B2B financial services company into a more consumer-focused payments technology company” (p.1). Staying competitive for MasterCard suddenly means taking advantage of their growing younger employees expecting to access social media in their work place and the brand’s need to incorporate a shared vision that they could all focused on. MasterCard is now in a four phase strategy to, educate and encourage all 8,000 employees to become a brand Ambassador (Meister).

The second future implication, Cohen also saw privacy as another growing trend in the future. She thinks people will begin to guard their privacy more because it will have become a commodity. Cohen argues that personal information and data will form into currency that has social media users caring more about their privacy and moving to protect it.

In light of privacy the real problems are corporations and technology that both openly and secretly retain personal information on their users, Facebook retains all rights, similarly despite the White House maintaining anonymous access, “According to the White House privacy policy, ‘Information you choose to share with the White House (directly and via third party sites) may be treated as public information.’” Epic.org also reported on asking the FTC to investigate Snapchat a mobile app that urges users to share intimate photos and videos and promises that they will disappear forever, but instead shares the content with law enforcement (Epic.org).

Epic.org reports based on a Pew Survey finds that a vast majority of Americans, including teens take steps to protect their on line privacy. The reports find that 60% of facebook teens set to privacy setting, block and report users on their sites.

According to an article in USA Today, young people care more about privacy after Edward Snowden’s NSA surveillance released:

Some 40% of 2,089 survey takers, aged 18 and older, said they had made changes to their privacy settings in the last three months, and 53 percent in the last six months. The poll was taken in late September.

The survey found people over the age of 45 are less likely to check social media privacy settings, with 26 percent in that age group having never made any changes to their privacy settings, while just 11 percent of respondents aged 18 to 44, said they never made privacy setting changes.

There is clearly a growing number of Americans who are concerned about their privacy but whether or not people will begin to view it as a commodity is yet to be seen, but it certain looks as if Cohen has a point with the growing concerns over users’ privacy.

Work Cited Page

Acohido, Byron. (2013, Nov. 18). Snowden Effect Young People Now Care About Privacy.  Retrieved from http://www.usatoday.com/story/cybertruth/2013/11/13/snowden-effect-         young-people-now-care-about-privacy/3517919/

Cohen, Heidi. (2012, Mar. 22). The Future of Social Media. Retrieved from                      http://heidicohen.com/future-of-social-media/

Epic.org. (2014). Electronic Privacy Information Center. Retrieved from                  http://epic.org/privacy/socialnet/

Meister, Jeanne. (2014, Mar. 26). Social Media Moving From Danger to Brand Building Opportunity. Retrieved from                http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeannemeister/2014/03/26/social-media-moving-from-danger-to-brand-building-opportunity/

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