It is very important to understand some of the used terms such as social networks, social graph, and social media. The term “Social networks” is used for communities or groups of people, who share a common background, interest, or perspective. These networks are available offline as much as they are online (like fashionable online services such as Facebook). So whether you are talking about people who attended Harvard University in 2008, REM fans, people who enjoy sky-diving, these networks exist despite of whether or not the individuals in them share life experiences and information on social media.

The social graph is the wide collection of places, people, and interests that makes us individuals. It’s why and how we’re connected to other people. If one thinks about that – a big part of who we are is defined by the schools we’ve attended, who we know, the relations we have made through the years, the interests that fascinate us, etc. Before social media, it was very difficult to find information about our social graph, because it was lost when we moved to a new place, we lost touch with our old friends, or stopped participating for some reason. Social media keeps us connected to our old friends, our past, and our interests.

The term social media represents the collection of technologies that capture content, communication, and other things across individuals, their social networks, and their friends. Examples of social media include social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook, blogging technologies like WordPress and TypePad, crowdsourcing products like video and photo sharing sites (YouTube and Flickr), Wikipedia, and many others. These technologies assist users to create easily content on the Internet and share it with other individuals. Social media is also the infrastructure that assists users in becoming publishers of certain content interesting to them and their friends.

Facebook is “one-size-fits-all” social network that provides users with one-stop shopping for all of their online communication, community, entertainment, and any other social media needs.