Over the last several months, I have noticed that people use the words ‘social media’ and ‘social networking’ interchangeably. Are they the same?
Not really. I would like to take a cue from Brian Solis who distinguishes the two as follows:
Social networking is a verb. It describes the interaction between people and content within any online community. The best known ones are sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube and Flickr.
Social media is any tool or service that uses the internet to facilitate conversations. Social media has created the democratization of information, transforming people from content readers into publishers.
Brian Solis’ definitions are short, sweet and correct. They help us also in understanding that social media is a more general, expansive term while social networking is more specific.