Online social networking

1.- Introduction to lesson

Today we are going to talk about social networking. We are also going to spend some time working on stressing important and new information in sentences.


2.- Social networking

I think social networking is very important. Nowadays, there are so many different ways to stay in contact with your friends and family. In this lesson, we are going to look at one particular website which is popular with people today.


3.- Your turn…

Answer the following questions out loud giving as much information as possible.

  • What is online social networking?
  • What are the different ways you use to stay in contact with your friends?
  • What is your preferred way of staying in contact with your friends and family? Why?


4.- Listening

You are now going to listen to your teacher answer the above questions. Note down her answers.

4.1.- Tapescript

What is online social networking?

When it comes to online social networking, websites are commonly used. These websites are known as social sites. Social networking websites function like an online community of internet users.

Depending on the website in question, many of these online community members share common interests in hobbies, religion, or politics. Once you are granted access to a social networking website you can begin to socialize. This socialization may include reading the profile pages of other members and possibly even contacting them.

The friends that you can make are just one of the many benefits to social networking online. Another one of those benefits includes diversity because the internet gives individuals from all around the world access to social networking sites.

This means that although you are in the United States, you could develop an online friendship with someone in Denmark. Not only will you make new friends, but you just might learn a thing or two about new cultures or new languages and learning is always a good thing.

What are the different ways you use to stay in contact with your friends?
I must admit I often email and text my closest friends. I hardly ever call them as I don’t really have the time. The only people I call are my mum and my brother. I think nowadays it is so easy, quick and cheap to email or text.

What is your preferred way of staying in contact with your friends and family? Why?

I would love to have the time to call my friends and family but I don’t. For this reason I use informal methods like, facebook, email and text.


5.- Introduction to Facebook

Facebook is a global social networking website that has members from all over the world. It is available to everyone to use and it is free.




5.1.- Key vocabulary

Before listening to John talk about Facebook, please learn the key vocabulary below:

  • Website: página Web
  • User: usuario
  • Status: estado sentimental
  • To notify: notificar
  • To post: poner
  • Fan club: club de fans
  • Membership: ser miembro
  • To expand: expandir
  • To block: bloquear


5.2.- Put the following lexical items in order according to John’s initial description of Facebook:

Private profile / Add friends / Share pictures / Promote an event
Keep track of friends / Block people / Make friends
Update status

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Corregir   Ver Solución   Limpiar


5.3.- Listen to John again. Fill in the table with the information from the listening.

(Para ver la solución hacer doble click en la tabla; un click vuelve a posición original)



5.4.- Look at the tapescript and highlight the words and phrases that helped you to find the answers.



Facebook is a free global social networking website that is privately owned. There are many different things that facebook users can do. Here’s just a few things:

  • Users can add friends and send them messages
  • They can keep track of what their friends are doing
  • They can block people they don’t want to be friends with.
  • They can make friends with a common interest
  • They can update their status to notify friends about how they are feeling and what they are doing
  • Users can effortlessly share pictures and videos
  • They can promote an event by inviting their friends. Their guests can then RSVP on the page. It’s environmentally clean, quick fun.
  • Users can make their profile as private as they want with only giving access to their close friends or all of their friends.

Mark Zuckerberg founded Facebook with one of his college roommates and a few computer science students when he was studying at Harvard University. The website's membership was initially limited to Harvard students, but was expanded to other colleges in the Boston area. It later expanded further to include all university students, then secondary school students, and, finally, to anyone aged 13 and above. The website currently has more than 300 million active users worldwide.

Facebook has met with some problems. It has been blocked intermittently in several countries including Syria, China and Iran. It has also been blocked at many places of work to discourage employees from wasting time whilst they are supposed to be carrying out their daily job.


6.- Response to listening

Answer the following questions, giving as much detail as possible:

  • Are you a member of facebook?

If yes:

  • How often do you use it?
  • What do you use it for?
  • Do you think it will be around for a long time? Why?

If no:

  • Are you interested in joining facebook? Why?
  • How do you like to keep in contact with your friends?
  • How do you see the future of social networking?


7.- Language Focus: Primary Stress

As we have previously seen, in English, each sentence has a primary stress. The primary stress usually indicates new or important information. For example:

  • He is happy (The primary stress is on "happy" because this provides us with important information about how "he" is feeling).
  • I received lots of presents because today was my birthday (The primary stress is on "today" because this provides us with new information).

It is important that we stress the right word in a sentence because if we don’t, we could be giving more importance to a word which is not that important and therefore taking importance away from the new and important information.


7.1.- Listen to the following short sentences and decide where the primary stress falls. You can indicate the primary stress by placing over the word where you want to place the stress.


(Para ver la solución hacer doble click en texto; un click vuelve a posición original)



7.2.- Look at the following passage and decide where the primary stress falls in each sentence.

(Para ver la solución hacer doble click en texto; un click vuelve a posición original)


Extract taken from ‘A puzzle for Logan’ by Richard Macandrew (CUP)


You have now reached the end of the Speaking and Listening Course for Intermediate students. Congratulations! We hope you have learned a lot and enjoyed yourself at the same time.

See you next time!

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