A relatively "new" term with lots of creative and complex defintions.
Simplest Definition -- software that facilitates collaboration.
Wikipedia Defintion -- Software that enables people to rendez-vous, connect or colloborate through computer-mediated communication.
MySpace is one of the best known social software sites, but there are many sites that utilize social software for a variety of reasons. Social software is about meeting people, but it is also about sharing information, opinions and interests.
A few examples of Social Software Sites:
- MySpace/Friendster/Facebook/bebo -- online communities for connecting with friends and meeting new people.
- Second Life -- An online society with a 3D world.
- YouTube -- a place to share, rate and comment on videos
- Flickr -- a place to share and talk about photos
- Xanga/LiveJournal -- communities of online diaries and journals
- LastFM and LibraryThing -- sharing music and books (respectively)
- del.icio.us -- social bookmarking (sharing your bookmarks with others)
- Expressing Individuality
- Engaging in
and Writing Reading
- Sharing Ideas and Opinions (and sometimes creative work such as music or photos)
- Great tool for learning hands-on about blogging, podcasting, and other new technologies
and collaboration with others Community Building
- Communication with each other, but also Teens to Adults and Adults to Teens.
- Raising awareness of events and "causes"
- Freedom to choose, be creative and express themselves.
A great site for learning about safety online is WiredSafety, which includes great handouts on Social Software and YouTube.
I will hopefully find time to finish this post next week. Feedback and comments are welcome.