The Antisocial Aspect of Social Networking

It’s estimated that more than one-third (35 percent) of U.S. adults have a profile on a social networking site, according to the Pew Internet & American Life Project’s daily tracking survey of 2,251 adults. A more practical survey can be done just by thinking of the number of people you know who use these sites – starting with yourself.While many will legitimately use social networking sites for broadcasting, distribution, and communication purposes, more people are attempting to instigate and manage friendships online.Therein lies the problem. I contend that if social networking sites contribute to the decline or decay of social skills, they inadvertently create an antisocial mindset for people as they navigate in the real world because they become more adept and comfortable at socializing in an online world.If you were walking down the street, or sitting on a bus and someone tapped you on the shoulder and said, “I’d like to add you as a friend,” you would look at them as though they were insane, or at the very least, with skepticism. Online, most people are not nearly as discriminate about their friend selections as they are in real life, but they should be.Friends are afforded special privileges both online and offline. Offline you have to earn them. Online they are instantly granted. One such privilege is knowing who your other friends are and what you are up to. This comes in the form of “updates” which a surprising number of people use to post personal information and comments.The shouting nature of MySpace (which is saturated with people who are eager to draw attention to themselves or their songs) makes it a favorite among a younger demographic of social network users.Dr. Himanshu Tyagi, a psychiatrist at West London Mental Health Trust, stated in a recent report that people born after 1990, who were just five-years-old or younger when the use of Internet became mainstream in 1995, have grown up in a world dominated by online social networks such as MySpace and Facebook. He states:”This is the age group involved with the Bridgend suicides and what many of these young people had in common was their use of Internet to communicate. It’s a world where everything moves fast and changes all the time, where relationships are quickly disposed at the click of a mouse, where you can delete your profile if you don’t like it and swap an unacceptable identity in the blink of an eye for one that is more acceptable,” said Dr. Tyagi. “People used to the quick pace of online social networking may soon find the real world boring and unstimulating, potentially leading to more extreme behavior to get that sense.”It’s been my observation that most people don’t know who they have among their “friends” on MySpace. More commonly, people amass hoards of friends strictly for the sake of appearance – the appearance of being popular. So friends can get used both offline and online in that regard.The 80/20 rule teaches us a lot about friends and time invested in friendships (which is what really defines them). 80% of correspondence that you send to anyone on any given social networking site will be sent to only 20% of the people you have in your “friends list.” Just as 80% of your time spent nurturing friendships will be with 20% of your friends. You are most likely to communicate with that 20% without the aid of a social network.Facebook, for lack of a better if not more accurate description, has become the adult version of MySpace. As the real estate mantra goes: build it and they will come. But social networks have a saying all their own: build it and they will use it for illegitimate purposes.B.J. Fogg, director of the Persuasive Tech Lab at Stanford University and editor of a book called The Psychology of Facebook has been studying the social networking phenomenon for years. He argues that what we are doing on Facebook and other social networking sites is a lot like “primate” grooming. We are building “social solidarity” by publicly flirting and socializing online.Yes, your suspicions are correct: the most illegitimate use of social networks takes place among people who are married or in committed relationships who use them to locate old flames. Actually, that’s not the illegitimate part. The illegitimacy stems from the resulting clandestine relationships that occur. There’s a lot of rekindling taking place on social networks…probably right now as you read this article.According to Nancy Kalish, a professor of psychology at Cal State Sacramento and author of the book Lost & Found Lovers: Facts and Fantasies of Rekindled Romance, many people try to reunite online because it’s so easy,” Kalish says. “Most people go looking for lost loves, initially, out of curiosity. First loves in particular are most often sought out online, she says, and they pose the most danger to real-world relationships for two reasons: biological and emotional.First, she says, when two people meet in the adolescent years (between 16 and 22), they start to form their identity together and break away from family. In those formative years, “you define what love is and what you want from a partner, and when you lose that, you lose that piece of yourself.” This combines with the hormones that are encoding in your brain at that age as “emotive memory” and creates a biological imprint of that person.On top of all this chemistry, the adolescent years are typically the years when humans start to reach their reproductive maturity and look for biologically compatible mates. Kalish argues that this in turn causes problems because people are delaying marriage. She says, “we are so far away from marrying our first love because people are waiting until later in life to settle down. When they do settle down, oftentimes, the chemistry just isn’t the same.”Perhaps this is the reason why in the Pew survey, of the adults who had removed their profile from a social networking site, 3 percent said they did it because their spouse or partner wanted it removed.My favorite social networking site is LinkedIn. It’s essentially an online portal for resumes. Like the others, it operates on a membership/sign-up basis, but is geared toward professionals and building professional networks. Unlike MySpace and Facebook, people lead with their credentials on LinkedIn and the site regulates, discourages, and prevents abuse of the system by blocking those who get repeated rejections for linking requests.It’s most distinctive feature are the recommendations that others make on your behalf to help you complete and promote your profile. The LinkedIn business premise is simple: you should know at least 5 people with whom you have real relationships who can endorse you to make you a more valuable connection to others.LinkedIn is not a cozy, give-a-shot-out, tell you about my weekend, post a stupid comment about what I just saw on TV social network. It is for serious professionals who want to network with credentialed people without the levity and frivolity that is so commonplace on social networks. It’s not designed for conviviality and making friends.Another social network that’s growing in popularity is Twitter. Twitter allows users to “follow” each other (i.e. keep up with each other’s activities) and is predicated on the exchange of short updates that can be seen online via their website or sent to you via your cell phone. I suspect that many music artists and professionals who regularly calendar events that the public, their fans, or constituents need to be made aware of will utilize it more in the future.Personally, I have yet to make a friend through any social networking site. Nor do I know of anyone who has. I’m sure it happens. I’ve even been contacted by “friends” from my past. I’m hesitant to call them “friends” because I believe it’s extremely rare when you lose contact with a real friend.Most of the time when we lose contact with each other it’s because we lacked the motivation or commitment to maintain the friendship in the first place; therefore, I tend to keep past “friends” in my past because that’s usually where they belong. Those who don’t subscribe to this philosophy usually end up briefly re-uniting with their past friends and drifting apart once more.For me, the social networks offer their greatest value from a professional capacity. They serve as a divide between my associates and my friends, while allowing me to communicate with both simultaneously. But in the end, they offer us a reminder of just how valuable real friends and friendships are, if we can take our faces away from the computers screens long enough to realize it.

How to Utilize Colors strategically in website design

Color can be a powerful tool for website design. It can draw attention, convey emotion, inspire an atmosphere of desire, or directing conversation all these and more are accomplished through the clever and well-planned application of color. Similar to layouts and style of your words the color visitors will see on your website will determine the way they feel about it and whether or whether they’ll return.

What makes color important for Website Design

Colors can increase the visibility of your brand and can also entice visitors to your website to engage. The impression they form subconsciously about your company could be based on your website’s color scheme. So when a web design firm is first deciding to design your site, they first look at two aspects – the feelings your brand wants to create, and the cultural and philosophical contexts that it would like to be in line with. This is the initial step to choosing the right colors for the design of your website.

Color Psychology – colors trigger emotions
Psychology of color is the term used to describe the impact that color can influence a person’s feelings behaviours, feelings, and moods. Although the rules are not fixed in stone, we are drawn to certain colors because they affect our feelings. The context here is crucial. Red could mean fear and risk to certain people, but enthusiasm and passion to other people. When using colors in web design, it should blend seamlessly with aspects of the website including copy, typography, and images.

Below are some colors and the emotions they bring. While they aren’t fixed in stone, these are generalizations and can have an impact on the people who are watching. This will help you determine the color of your choice in accordance with how you would like your viewers to feel and the actions you would like them to do.

• Red Power, Love passion, danger exhilaration

• Orange: fun, warmth, comfort, freedom, playfulness

• White Peace, Clarity pure, purity, and cleanliness

• Blue: calm, confidence peace, trust and logic, as well as reliability

• Purple: luxury, sophistication, mystery, loyalty, creativity

• Pink: gentleness, sincerity, nurturing, warmth

• Green: health, nature, prosperity, abundance

• Brown nature protection, security, support

• Yellow: happiness, creativity, optimism, friendliness

• The Black: class, control power, sophistication and depression

Cultural Context
While various colors could have different meanings for individuals, colors can are also associated with cultural significance. In many Western countries, it is believed that black symbolizes mourning and death, while the same color is used in a variety of Eastern nations.

The color Red is thought to be associated with focus and pressure in Western culture, while many Eastern cultures believe it is associated with luck. It is important to consider the context when making a selection of colors. Most of the time, you’ll prefer to select the colors of your company based on the audience you want to reach. Based on the location where your market is located the colors displayed on your site could convey significant messages in different ways.

However, it’s not always the case particularly when it comes to massive and well-known brands that have images already embedded in our consciousness. The red color of Coca-Cola or KFC, for example, will typically have no negative associations anymore, considering the extent to which well-known and loved they are.

The Basics of Color Theory

Theory of Color is an established set of rules that can be helpful in understanding and creating complementary colors and combinations. These basic principles can assist you in creating a color colour scheme that is appropriate to your company’s specific requirements.

Primary Colors: They are three in total – blue, red and yellow.

Secondary Colors: These colors are created using primary color combinations like the green (yellow and blue) and orange (yellow and red) along with purple (blue plus red).

Tertiary Colors: These are colors made by mixing primary with secondary color.

Shades, Tints Tones: The colors listed above are referred to by some as “pure shades”. But, these colors can be used to create other colors. Tints are created by adding white to pure colors, which makes them less intense and lighter. Shades are created by adding a lack and making them heavier and more powerful. It is possible to use white and black in different levels to create tones using pure hues.

Contrast: Contrast is the perception of the difference between two hues when put next to each other. The greater the contrast, the more the two colours stand out from one another. This is a crucial idea since different levels of contrast can make an entirely different look to your site. A text that is colored and placed with a background that is low in contrast could cause issues with reading. Contrast may also make certain elements stand out (or even deflect attention from particular elements when used effectively) in your website and can make them stand out visually.

Color Models

When designing graphic designs, color is defined using color models. This is due to the fact that it is possible to find millions of different colors and it’s impossible to list every single one. The standards were developed to allow us to easily define colors by using numbers.

RGB Model: The model that is used when working with designs on the screen. RGB refers to Red as well as Green and Blue. The three colors are assigned a value of zero to 255, and the different combinations give us different shades. The colors are typically displayed as color codes, six-digit hexadecimal code numbers. It’s an “additive” color model.

CMYK Model: This model is utilized to print for printing purposes. It is a combination of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black Each color is described using its proportion of these colors. It is a “subtractive” colour model.

the LAB Model: The word LAB means lightness, A channel as well as B channel. It’s a more complicated model. It includes the lightness factor, which is a range of zero to 100, an A component that is located on the red-green axis, and a B component that is located on the blue and yellow axis. This means that the color description is more akin to human perception when compared to RGB and CMYK models.

Making Color Palettes

The first color you select for your website is the primary color of your company’s branding (Red is the color of Coca Cola, for example). This is where the psychology of color is particularly useful. The color you choose is in accordance with the feelings and the personality you want to communicate. Following that, you build your color palette with the colors that complement the base color. This is the time when the color wheel is used.

Color Wheel: A color wheel can be described as an instrument that is used to illustrate the connection between different colors. It’s basically an abstract drawing that arranges different hues of color within a circle.

With the aid of a color wheel, you have are five primary types of color palettes you can make with the help of color wheel

Analogous Palette: Analogous colors are put on top of each other in the form of a color wheel. They are in low contrast against each other and work well together, giving an elegant effect.

Monochromatic Palette: The palettes are made up of one hue that is distinctive, and is complemented by elements of various colors and hues. The palette is appealing to look at. To prevent an uninteresting look it’s beneficial to add different colors, or even complimentary elements to your website.

The HTML0 Triad Palette – This palette is composed of three colors, which are evenly spaced from each other on the wheel of color. This method should be employed with care, and not only to select colours that go well with each other and blend well but also to utilize the colors in a way that doesn’t appear too cluttered and loud.

Complementary Palette: The Complementary palette is made up of colors that are on opposite sides of the spectrum of colors. This is a great way to create striking art designs that attract attention to certain parts of your site.

Split-complementary Palette: The palette is similar to complement palettes, but it has another color placed beside one of the colors that complement each other on the wheel of color. If used correctly this design can be effective in creating a natural appearance without too much sound.

Effective Tools to Inspire

Inspiration for new colors can be found everywhere from competitor websites to nature, and the beautiful outdoors. It’s also beneficial to keep abreast of the new trends in branding. Here are some helpful tools to help you get going with fresh color concepts right away.

Pinterest The website Pinterest is a wealth of color palette concepts developed by designers from all over the globe. They can be an incredible source of ideas.

Pantone: The color Pantone has been the leading company in the area of color. It is an index of color that determines the various shades of the various hues. The most recent trends in color in fashion and design generally stem from pantone.

color-scheme Creation Websites: There are many dedicated color websites for designers that can assist you in creating colors and play around with the palettes in any way you would like. This is a fantastic opportunity to try out and create new palettes for yourself. Websites such as Adobe Color Wheel, Color Collective along with Design Seeds can be great for quick ideas.


While color alone may not be the sole factor in website design, it does play an important role. If used properly and in a way that is appropriate, the color(s) that you use be a defining factor for your company’s image. Utilizing the tricks and tips that were mentioned earlier, you will not have any issues using colors in your web design to get the most impact.