A broad category or genre of communications media which occasion or enable social interaction among groups of people, whether they are known to each other or strangers, localized in the same place or geographically dispersed. It includes new media such as newsgroups, MMOGs, and social networking sites. Such media can be thought of metaphorically as virtual meeting places which function to occasion the exchange of media content among users who are both producers and consumers. Social media have also become adopted as a significant marketing tool. See also interactivity; user-generated content; Web 2.0.
Subjects: Media Studies.