Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963992 | Print ISBN: 9781412906784 | Online ISBN: 9781412963992| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Internet, Social Impact of
The Internet, popularized through the World Wide Web, has applications for communication, information sharing, commerce, gaming, and interactive activities. Literally a “network of networks,” consisting of millions of smaller domestic, academic, business, and secured government networks, the Internet is a vehicle for the transfer of information and services, such as electronic mail, online chat, computer file transfer, file sharing, text documents, images, multimedia, and other items of information. The use of the Internet has developed and been applied socially through five waves of development and use that are in a state of flux and ongoing: (1) physical connection and ease of use; (2) socialization and new channels of communication; (3) information; (4) commerce; and (5) gaming/entertainment and interactive experience. All five waves have implications for education. Through these waves of development, the Internet has been applied to the human experience and created a social phenomenon. Physical Connection and Ease of ...