The history of social media is relatively new, but when did it begin? You may be surprised to find out that it wasn’t Facebook or Twitter, two of the most popular social media sites who started it all.
Back in 1969, yes, that long ago, CompuServe was one of the first major commercial Internet providers in the US. They used the technology known as dial-up to connect to the web.
It was the dominant force during the eighties and part of the nineties until others started to catch up.
The term social media is used to describe Internet sites in which people interact, that’s why the social part, sharing ideas and information about multiple topics.
Interactions include sharing media such as videos, music, and photos.
The first e-mail was sent in 1971 and even though that form of communication is being overrun by texting and Skype, it was the prevailing way to communicate remotely for many years.
It is still used, but not as much as it was in previous decades. Now, Facebook, Twitter and other sites are more popular and give users that instant connection that characterizes the social media of our times.
In 1985, America Online (AOL) was founded and it became one of the most popular early providers of Internet connections.
A very popular social media medium is blogging which was started in 1997 and in the same year AOL Instant Message made its debut, allowing people to chat online.
In this very cool infographic created by Cen Drine from Creative Ramblings, you can see in detail the timeline of how social media as we know it today, came to be.
Where social media goes from here, we don’t know. What we do know is that new sites keep popping up and users keep looking for straight forward, easy ways to communicate with friends.
Did you know that social media started in 1969? Which is your favorite social media site?
[Image via Shutterstock]