Scholars in many fields have begun to investigate the impact of social networking sites, investigating how such sites may play into issues of identity, privacy, According to a study in 2015, 63% of the users of Facebook or Twitter in the USA consider these networks to be their main source of news, with entertainment news being the most seen.In the times of breaking news, Twitter users are more likely to stay invested in the story.Furthermore, the idea that these services are defined by their ability to bring people together provides too broad a definition.Such a broad definition would suggest that the telegraph and telephone were social networking services – not the Internet technologies scholars are intending to describe.Social networking sites allow users to share ideas, digital photos and videos, posts, and to inform others about online or real-world activities and events with people in their network.While in-person social networking – such as gathering in a village market to talk about events – has existed since the earliest development of towns, the Web enables people to connect with others who live in different locations, ranging from across a city to across the world.
Many prototypical features of social networking sites were also present in online services such as America Online, Prodigy, Compu Serve, Chat Net, and The WELL. Many of these early communities focused on bringing people together to interact with each other through chat rooms, and encouraged users to share personal information and ideas via personal webpages by providing easy-to-use publishing tools and free or inexpensive webspace.
They may feature digital photo/video/sharing and "web logging" diary entries online (blogging).
social-network services, though in a broader sense, a social-network service usually provides an individual-centered service whereas online community services are group-centered.
In some cases when the news story is more political, users may be more likely to voice their opinion on a linked Facebook story with a comment or like, while Twitter users will just follow the sites feed and/ or retweet the article.
Several websites are beginning to tap into the power of the social networking model for philanthropy.
Such models provide a means for connecting otherwise fragmented industries and small organizations without the resources to reach a broader audience with interested users.