Today virtual communities have become a massive phenomenon on the Internet. You may be surprised to know that the safest thing is that you belong to one of them. But what are they and what are the functions of virtual communities? We’ll tell you then.
What are virtual communities
They are groups of people and institutions organized cybernetically with specific interests that interact through the network. The people who form them can have very distant geographical and cultural origins.
What is required to belong to one of these communities is a computer or mobile device and an internet connection. The characteristics of virtual communities are:
- The composition of groups of individuals from different backgrounds and social groups.
- The organization of its members around a specific topic or interest : video games, literature, romantic dates, etc.
- It is available digitally through a service or website.
- They have moderators in charge of supervising that all participants respect the rules of the space.
- Provide participants with a sense of belonging.
Virtual communities have existed since the 1970s, when they were used in the exchange of military, scientific and academic data through the rudimentary internet of that time.
But as we mentioned at the beginning, they have become a massive phenomenon in recent times, due to the appearance of social networks, which are capable of interconnecting millions of people in different ways.
Some virtual communities that exist today
Next, we will show you some of the virtual communities that exist on the web. However, some of these communities require minimal connection speed. That is why before entering any we recommend that you measure the speed of your internet connection .
In the event that you have a slow connection, then we recommend that you take a look at the following link where we will show you the ways to know why the internet connection is slow .
- Wikipedia: in addition to being a tool that offers you information on certain topics, there is a community of contributors who discuss articles , create new ones, correct existing ones and keep the encyclopedia updated.
- Facebook: is one of the most recognized virtual communities, which brings together people of different ages, ideologies, social classes, races and nationalities to share and comment on infinite topics and content created. You only need to have an email if you want to belong to this community.
- Twitter: It is a social network where you can read, share news and comment on it between users from different parts of the world.
- WhatsApp: Application that allows communication in real time between several people. It offers the possibility of creating groups in which you can share multimedia materials and texts of interest to its members.
- Blogs: in these, readers can make their opinion about what they have read or seen known and at the same time receive responses from other users of the website in question.
- YouTube: is a website created for viewing, mounting and downloading videos, with a section to interact , undertake and promote advertising. In addition, it is also possible to generate income and earn money in this community.
- Ning: is an online platform designed to create social networks. Yes, you can create a social network yourself with a specific topic or purpose and form your own virtual community . The profiles created for users will work like any other social network, that is, with them they can share photos, videos, messages, etc.
- TwitCam. It offers live lectures that can benefit up to 100,000 observers. It is free and the only requirement is to have a Twitter account.
- Discussion forums on the internet . They can be public or private , depending on the demands of the creator of the same. They are used to debate or exchange opinions between users through text messages. A good example of this is the popular Taringa, an Argentine virtual community that is growing.
- In case you want to know which are the best virtual communities, then we recommend that you click here .
What are the functions of virtual communities
You already know what a virtual community is, its characteristics and some examples of these organizations. In addition to all this, it is important that you understand what your goals are. The functions of virtual communities are endless. In this article we will highlight four:
- Encourage the development of critical thinking: Through conversations people express themselves with total freedom.
- Transmit updated information on the thematic field of the community.
- Provide useful data to entrepreneurs that will contribute to the success of their business.
- Encourage personal relationships without the need for physical presence.