Social computing is basically the use of a computer for social purposes. Before the Internet, computers were largely used as tools for increasing productivity. The Internet introduced a social element where users could network, share interests, publish personal insights and use their computers for more than just doing a job faster.
Social computing can still benefit businesses synergistically if it is used for business purposes. Social computing can be used to market products and promote customer relations. Online marketing and viral marketing are two types of promotional advertising that have grown out of social computing. In social computing, the Internet allows users to interact through many mediums, including:
- Social media sites
- Multiplayer games
- Instant messaging
- Open-source development