The world has embarked on massive scientific and technological developments and inventions; the innovation of computers, particularly the Internet , has influenced people’s culture in a number of ways. Some tradition practices, beliefs, values and norms have been challenged by information from the internet whereas others have been reinforced. Alternatively, there has been an emergence of Internet supported and reinforced cultures (Croucher 45-67).
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Culture is a component of how people think, do, belief and perceive as generally accepted; traditional definition of a culture indicated that it operated with a certain society living in similar geographical area. The Internet has challenged the definition since people from different parts of the world can interact and develop a certain culture among them. Communication is the mode through which information is shared among people; the sharing brings about peoples values, believes, and builds knowledge. As people with diverse views communicate, they share experiences, views and opinions, this sharing have an effect on the culture of either party. They tend to deviate from the traditional expected way of doing things to accommodate the views of other people.
The Internet has transformed how people live, work and play; people are able to use search engines to get specific life parameters and explanations; this was a role that was played by the old in a community. They were seen as sources of wisdom and advice to the young people. Respect to the old was emphasised by the noble role they played; however, the Internet has come to “replace” the role of experienced people in a community. This has lead to societies that do not value their old generation (Cliche and Marcelo 12-34).
The development of social networks like Face-book and Twitter, which are estimated to have a subscription of over a billion young people has created a culture among the users. Cyber-culture has been developed where some people feel they need to connect to the world using such engines. Social networks have been used to market goods, get spouses and friends; such roles had been defined differently by tradition cultures. Internet has brought a global culture; a common culture that every person can recognize with and work in accordance; with the enhanced communication, people are able to respect other people’s views and cultural differences that operated previously have been broken.
Culture is passed from generation to generation through socialisation process; the internet has become a strong socialization tool; young people in the community have access to materials some that might be detrimental to their values and virtues while others are beneficial to them. The free availability of information has resulted to a knowledgeable community; knowledge attained may work for the benefit of societal values or can be an erosion of morals. The society no-longer dictate the material that people will see, listen and consume; it is freely available over the internet. The norms, believes and ideologies that held societies together have been threatened by Internet; people are acting in free will and controls their ways (Cliche and Marcelo 12-34).
Cliche, Gilles, and Marcelo Bonilla. Internet and society in Latin America and the Caribbean.Petang: IDRC, 2004.
Croucher, Sheila. Globalization and Belonging: The Politics of Identity in a Changing World. Rowman & Littlefield,2004.