Social media is the most potent and unrivaled weapon in world politics. The arrival of Web-based technologies and the exponential rise of access, including social networking sites by members of society, have been among them during this digital age. One essential feature of innovation is that it enables individuals to build, share, work and communicate (Sarai, 2019). The evolution of these emerging technologies makes it much easier and more popular for a specific group of people or a new audience to communicate information. Many of us in the present-day world rely on social networking platforms like Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram to identify and connect. Each one has its advantages, but it should be remembered that social networks can never replace a real human relationship. Besides, there is little research to establish the long-term effects of social media use, good or bad, as this is a relatively new technology (Lambert, 2020). However, numerous studies show a strong connection between social media use and a higher probability of depression. Thus, this short discourse focus on enlightening the controversies surrounding social media use.
Positive Influences of Social Media
The power of social media fosters change
Social media also proves a power to help the most vulnerable, like older people, to engage people regionally more than eager to help. According to Batholomew (2020)
Being able to jump onto FaceTime means that people no longer need to feel alone if they can’t physically be with someone. Granny’s can listen to grandchildren’s music practice and read a story at bedtime through technology, helping worried family stay in touch with older relatives needing to stay at home to stay safe. (par 2)
Clearly, Facebook groups have been formed throughout the country to support disadvantaged populations who need to segregate themselves because of their health problems or age. They can exchange their telephone numbers for chatting to stay up or find practical aid (Bartholomew, 2020). People who want to help others come together on Facebook to support individuals they have never met. Local housing groups, clubs, hamlets, and educational institutions mean many segregated individuals can request help, and other people glow as people react.
Social media plays a crucial role in promoting businesses’ success
In recent years, companies have had to cope with several corporate social media issues. This shift is because digital networks are a new tool being used for the first time by businesses of all sizes. For instance, social media helps business people connect with their customers, increase brand awareness and increase their leadership and sales (Lambert, 2020). Moreover, with over three billion people using social media platforms every month globally, users and engagement continue to increase on major platforms.
Social media helps society reduce the mental health issues’ burden
Restricted use of the various social media platforms is critical for promoting a society’s sustainable existence. Different life experiences expose individuals to mental health issues such as depression (WARC, 2017). Depression can include death or suicide, a sense of worthlessness, anxiety or physical extreme fatigue or headaches with some depression of the treatments including psychotherapy and medications. Fortunately, the existence of social media platforms not only enables affected people to contact qualified mental physicians (Bartholomew, 2020). Additionally, this invention accords them the opportunity to share their experiences with the other victims worldwide to enhance their recovery options.
Negative Influences of Social Media
Uncontrolled social media use exposes society to undesirable mental health issues
Although people know that images they access in social media are manipulated, they still develop self-doubts. Many people share their successes but fail to share their challenges on social media. Consequently, their viewers, particularly those facing life’s adversities, end up developing mental health conditions that might undermine their productivity (Chong, 2017). Such people might also develop suicidal thoughts or expose their family members to financial, social, and emotional challenges.
Social media undermines the benefits associated with activism by promoting “slacktivism.”
While social media activism raises awareness regarding societal issues, there remain questions about siphoning this consciousness into real change. Some claim that connectivity has inspired people to use mobile devices to raise their concerns about social problems without actually engaging in real-life campaigns (Price-Mitchell, 2019). The investigators found that public approval is designed to satisfy other opinions, while private individuals do because the etiology is based on their values. This peer pressure can play a part in US political polls’ recent trend to misread the voting intentions. Besides, artists display reduced productivity (5 Reasons Why Artists Fail with Social Media, n.d). Thus, social media has a negative influence in all fields despite the increasing campaign for its adoption.
Individuals can contact fellow work colleagues, family, friends, global and regional news, and have access to entertainment via all the available applications and platforms. Furthermore, saving money on FaceTime implies that people do not have to feel alone when they cannot be with someone physically, allowing worried families to stay in touch with elderly relatives who need to be at home to stay safe. However, it is vital to acknowledge the negative consequences of social media dependence to help society maximize the positive influences while minimizing the perceived adverse effects. Thus, although social media is a powerful force in this 21st century, all global stakeholders need to advocate for restricted use of the media to guarantee a productive and sustainable population.
5 reasons why artists fail with social media (And how to succeed). (n.d). ARTWORK ARCHIVE. Web.
Bartholomew, B. (2020). How Social Media can be a force for good in times like this! Equimedia. Web.
Chong, K. (2017). The social media habits of Generation Z [Web log post]. Blog hootsuite. Web.
Lambert, J. (2020). Study: The social media habits of generation Z. Blog Gorizen. Web.
Price-Mitchell, M. (2019). Disadvantages of social networking: Surprising insights from teens. roots of action. Web.
Sarai S. (2019). Opinion: The controversies of social media. Jmore Living. Web.
WARC. (2017). Instagram is ‘worst’ for youth mental health. WARC. Web.