History of Social Media before Facebook

Now an essential part of everyday life for most people, social media has achieved significant growth over the past few years as the result of Smartphones, tablets, and easy broadband access. With Facebook and Twitter ranking as perhaps the most well known examples of modern social media alongside LinkedIn and Pinterest, where did online social media come from? What is the history of social media? What were some of the notable precursors to the current social networks used by millions around the world?


History of Social Media:

In the history of social media, early forms of social communication online were enabled through bulletin board systems devised by programmers and driven by code; communications via modems and telephone lines from the 1970s into the 1980s used domains where users could post text, and (very slowly) images. The growth of home computers, and public domain forums like Compuserve by the early 1990s allowed for extensive discussion boards, as did Usenet.

Windows 95, affordable PCs, and accessible Internet deals through services like AOL in the mid 1990s further enabled easy social connections beyond emails. Some early sites looked to capitalize on interest in finding friends and relatives on the Internet, with Friends Reunited and Classmates being early versions. The popularity of chat rooms on sites like Yahoo and MSN, as well as the growth of blogs and personal web sites, also sped up connections.

” Friends Reunited:

Friends Reunited launched around 2000 was a very popular social network before Facebook and known for reuniting old school friends.Friends reunited is helping people to remember their most cherished memories.


Classmates is the oldest and popular social networking to connect with old friends from high school & college was launched around 1995. “

Faster ADSL lines in the early 2000s saw more sites arrive to fill the demand for social media content; Friendster provided a precursor of sorts to Facebook in the period, while LinkedIn was launched in 2003 as a way of networking different professionals around the site. MySpace arrived in the same year, and achieved worldwide success due to its tailoring to youngsters wanting to share photos and music entries. Easy to use blogging templates like Blogger and WordPress also resulted in cleaner, more professional looking sites.

” Friendster:

Friendster is a social gaming network earlier launched around 2002 was the social networking site before Facebook and Myspace.


Myspace is the social entertainment network which helps its members in connecting people to music, movies, games and mostly younger audience.


With more than 200 million members, Linkedin is the world’s largest professional network, helping professionals to create profiles and connect with other professional to discover new opportunities. “

Facebook’s rise to prominence in the 2000s has been well documented, with the social network emerging from Harvard and programmer Mark Zuckerberg in 2004 – initially limited to American colleges, Facebook went live around the world in 2006, and quickly became the default social network – its success was arguably due to a simple interface, and the viral way in which friends could be added, as well as to its provision of apps and simple advertising methods. May be Facebook analyzed the history of social media and came with the interesting features.
The ease by which users could extend their social media experiences from their computers to their smartphones by the end of the 2000s allowed for an almost constant connection to social networks, with sites increasingly incorporating instant messaging and other features. Twitter’s arrival by the end of the decade signaled the success of live updating as a key way of moving social networks beyond friends and family.

” Facebook:

Facebook is the world largest social network founded by Zuckerberg and used by millions of users to connect with friends and families. Facebook is also helping business to promote their brands and by liking you can stay updated with the latest news.


Twitter is another popular social networking which allows users to send messages up to 140 characters called as Tweets. It is also helping business to connect with their customers provide real time updates & marketing online. “

In recent years, Google Plus has attempted to offer a slightly different alternative to Facebook by integrating its social features into different parts of Google’s web presence; networks like Pinterest also feature a strong social component, and one that has become ubiquitous for sites like YouTube and Wikipedia. The number of different social media networks available to users has grown significantly in the past few years, and now address a wide range of different niches and tastes. While Facebook still dominates, the future of social media is likely to include either a huge new network, or even more specialist ones.

” Pinterest:

Pinterest is a pin board based social media which lets you to create and organize images, each item can be pinned which links back to the source site and repin an image of others on your own board. 

Google Plus:

The recent in social media network is Google+ owned by Google which started the service on invitation basis and now open network with restriction in age limit.Google+ is integrated with the Gmail account and slowly gaining popularity.   “

Looking at the history of social media, Facebook and Twitter evolved as the most popular and others gaining popularity and helping its users to make the best use of the social networks.

Guest Post by Liam Ohm

Liam Ohm writes about technology, from telephony solutions to social media. In his spare time he enjoys traveling and socializing.

14 thoughts on “History of Social Media before Facebook

    1. Praveen, Agree with your points. Facebook and Twitter are the best social media and many of us like both or either any of the two. Good to know you like twitter best and thanks for commenting in techbappa.

    1. Medha, Thanks for liking the article and for your comments in techbappa 🙂 There was completely new twist in social media after facebook was launched. There is lot of difference when compared with the earlier internet without social media.

    1. Sai, Thanks for commenting in techbappa 🙂 Its true that majority of them are using social media for many of the purposes which is just not limited to network of friends, now it is everywhere.

  1. I remember those AOL days, that’s how I met my husband back in ’98. We’ve come a long was with Twitter and Facebook. He’s still on AOL only though. I signed up for MySpace when my kids were getting into it in middle school. I would not even know how to log in though I heard it’s making a comeback.
    Lisa recently posted..What Is Customer Service During A CrisisMy Profile

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