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Regulating Facebook: Governing social networks and new media

Lee, T.ORCID: 0000-0003-3333-0076 (2011) Regulating Facebook: Governing social networks and new media. In: 2nd International SEARCH Conference 2011: New Media Culture and Effects, 28 - 29 May 2011, Taylor's University Lakeside Campus, Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia.


This insightful presentation started with fascinating statistics around Facebook, its market share, growth and its impact on society. One of the facts that grabbed our attention was the fact that “…some people buy computers to go on Facebook…” and the question for researches around impact of new media on people’s lifestyles. Terence also highlights the way Facebook impacts news media, health, reputation and points out the increasing trends in video posting (in comparison to the world’s largest video website owned by google, YouTube). With this in mind, naturally there is a variety of other problems, to mention a few:

Recorded cases cyberstalking and measures taken to prevent it.

Background checks by employers on potential staff members.

Parents spying on their kids online activities.

Parental neglect and the case of a child drowning while mother was playing a Facebook game.

Is Facebook, a wrong model for a social network? Should social networks be more anonymous as far as user interaction and personal data go? Perhaps not. the whole purpose of the social media is that users do want to be seen and heard by others.

Although there was much talk about Facebook in particular this presentation was more about regulation and governance of new media than anything else. Terence argues that not much has changed and like with any new and emerging medium, there are waves, or spikes in its regulation. What start of rebellious and anarchistic ends up being properly regulated eventually. We’re currently seeing that happen with new media. In this case regulatory procedures might take a new shape and form.

The session ends with the “Top Ten Facebook Rules”:

1. DON’T post your phone number or address

2. DO customise your security settings

3. DON’T post photos of yourself or others which could compromise reputations

4. DON’T reveal too much information

5. DON’T hold ‘open-house’ parties

6. DON’T expose yourself to legal issues

7. DO watch your language

8. DON’T accept all ‘friend’ requests

9. DON’T post your mother’s maiden name

10. DO log out

Item Type: Conference Item
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Media, Communication and Culture
Notes: Keynote Address
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