Usage of social netwroking sites and its effects on communication patterns of college students
Njiiri, Martha W
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Kenya has witnessed a steep growth in the number of internet users in the past few years. With such increased internet access in Kenya, use of social media services such as the social networking sites has been on the rise among 'college students in Nairobi. This study seeks to explore the extent to which college students use social networking sites and whether this constitutes dependence on virtual interactions; and if this affects their communication patterns. The objectives in this study sought to explore the popularity of social networking sites and their effects on the communication patterns of DON students. It also emerged imperative to determine the gratifications sought by the students in the social sites and consequently the degree of dependence by the DON students on the sites. Both qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection were adopted. Questionnaires and observation forms were used to collect data from the students so as to establish their usage patterns of the social networking sites and the effect this had on their communication patterns. Among the key findings were that there were emerging signs that the students were getting dependent on the social networking platforms which were characterized by logging daily to their accounts and spending an average of 60 to 180 minutes during each visit. A significant number of students admitted to using the social networking sites as their preferred mode of communication.