Because the world of social media and ICT is ever evolving, new words are constantly being developed (or old words recycled) to capture these growing platforms and concepts. While providing an exhaustive list of terms and definitions is outside the realm of this project, we did want to define some of the key terms that appear throughout the resource. Rather than reinvent the wheel, in some instances we have borrowed definitions from other sites, linking to them and the additional information and tools that they provide. Click on each word to find out more.
In this resource, we define social media as activities that are carried out online by individuals and organizations and that include an interactive component. Social media users are not only able to access information, but they can also share information in the form of words, pictures, videos and audio files. For example, social media include activities such as discussion forums, social networks (e.g. Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Periscope, Whatsapp, Pinterest, Whisper and Twitter), blogging and microblogging, bookmarking and media sharing.
The term information and communication technologies (ICT) encompasses both handheld devices (portable phones or tablets) that allow their users to receive or to send information using SMS (texts), apps or the web, as well as the activities that are carried out on these devices.
An early adopter is a person who embraces new technology before most other people do. Early adopters tend to buy or try out new hardware items and programs and new versions of existing programs sooner than most of their peers. According to a theory called Diffusion of Innovations (DoI) formulated by Everett Rogers, early adopters make up 13.5 percent of the population. (http://searchservervirtualization.techtarget.com/definition/early-adopter)
In modern use, most people refer to apps as applications or software programs that run specifically on phones or other mobile devices. (https://www.lifewire.com/what-are-apps-1616114)
In many countries, the number of smartphones has surpassed the number of personal computers; having a mobile-friendly website has become a critical part of having an online presence.The desktop version of a site might be difficult to view and use on a mobile device. The version that’s not mobile-friendly requires the user to pinch or zoom in order to read the content. Users find this a frustrating experience and are likely to abandon the site. Alternatively, the mobile-friendly version is readable and immediately usable. (https://developers.google.com/webmasters/mobile-sites/)