Dangers Of Social Media Essay Example
“Social Media is training us to compare our lives instead of appreciating everything we are” Bill Murray had said. Technology is changing the way people think and the way they see themselves. As time goes on people are becoming more and more dependent on technology and see it as a way of life. Firstly, the advancement in technology has given people access to many ways of talking to people, and unfortunately people use this in harmful ways such as bullying and harassment. Secondly, it gives people a false sense of reality thinking they have to be perfect for everyone to like them and make them feel wanted. Lastly, generations are becoming addicted to technology using it as an escape, leading to them getting anxiety if they do not constantly have it with them. Technology and social media are gradually harming the minds of the generations.
To start off, the advancement in social media has given people more ways to connect with other people. However, a lot of people use this as a way to bully others online. Social media was invented around 1997, i'm sure that cyberbullying has been around just as long as that but the first cases came to light in 2007 when a teen committed suicide after being harassed online. It has become a bigger problem over time leading to most teens witnessing some form of cyberbullying. A study done at The University of New Hampshire proved “About 75-80% of 12 to 14 years old have been cyberbullied”(Meech). So clearly most kids have experienced some form of this and over time it will get worse. In addition to this, not only has the advancement of social media created new ways to cyberbully it has also created many ways for people to sexually harass others in an anonymous way or even disguise themselves as others. The study from University of New Hampshire has also shown “...20% of kids under 18 have received sexual solicitation”(Meech). Many people have used the internet to connect with kids and try and solicit them. Even though people have been working to eliminate this problem, having the internet and having people with ill intention having access to it, there will always be a threat to these things. The more people who use social media and the bigger it grows the worse these problems will get, there is no way to keep every child out of harm's way when they have access to social media and connecting with strangers.
Next, social media gives people the opportunity to give others a look into their lives, however sometimes the lifestyle they choose to show on social media is not always what it is like. This makes others think that they have this perfect lifestyle and sometimes they desire this themselves. Even magazines and advertising use this as a method to get people to buy their products. They use models who are skinnier than the normal person or even photoshop them to make them look like they have the ideal body or even clear skin. Most young girls see this and want to be as perfect as them even though most of the time it is not even real. These teens and kids feel the need to look like these people, Donna Wick, the founder of mind-to-mind parenting goes on to explain, “For teenagers the combined weight of vulnerability, the need for validation, and the desire to compare themselves to their peers forms The ‘perfect storm of self doubt’”(Social Media and Self Esteem...). Seeing these people with these perfect bodies makes girls feel the need to look like them themselves. Making them feel insecure about themselves and in some cases changing the way they look, act, eat or obtain this “perfect body” they so badly desire. To continue on this subject, kids now feel that in order to reach this lifestyle they also have to act this part. Many times this includes hiding their imperfections that they do not want others to see such as anxiety or depression. This could lead to kids feeling even worse about themselves and not helping the problem but only hurting it. Jill Emanuele, a psychologist at the Child Mind Institute claims, “Social media alone is unlikely to be at the heart of the issue, but it can make a difficult situation even harder”(Social Media and Self Esteem...). Even the people who look like they live this perfect life online could even feel the effects of this, they may be angry and depressed about the difference of who they pretend to be and who they actually are in real life. In general, every teen feels the effects of this, even if they are the ones others are jealous of. This false sense of reality is not good for anyone in the situation, giving everyone involved self doubt.
Lastly, kids are just becoming too dependent on technology and it keeps getting worse as time goes on, leading to mental health issues. All generations use technology to some extent, whether it is older generations who do not use it as much and have a slight use of it, or it is teenagers whose life revolves around their phone and using it to connect with people. The use of technology this much could lead to anxiety, depression, and even addiction to technology itself. The overuse of peoples phones, computers, and just staring at a screen for too long can lead to anxiety and even depression. Anna Johansson wrote in her article, “The excessive use of mobile devices has been linked to anxiety and depression”(Johansson). There could be many explanations for this such as, the constant push to see the news, on every social media site there is always some sort of news. This could leave people feeling out of touch with the real world and the peers around them. Feeling this can take away the real life relationships that are vital for people. Another way technology and social media could be harming people is it could be leaving them with addiction to their phone, Anna Johansson also stated in her article “While the exact definition and legitimacy of ‘technology addition’ is debated, it is clear that for some people technological dependence can cause severe anxiety whenever technology is inaccessible”(Johansson). When a notification pops on someone's phone their first reaction is to pick up their phone and look to see what it is. Even when people are left without some form of technology they could feel hopeless and needing to find some form of it. Technology and the dependence on it leads to many different forms of mental health issues, leaving people feeling like they need it in order to live their lives.
Over time technology has been harming the minds of many people leaving them with mental health issues. Beginning with cyberbullying, the amount of access kids have to the internet these days also gives them more ways to connect with each other, however some kids can use this in ways to harm others. Next, it gives people a view into others lives, but sometimes the lives they portray on the internet is not what they are actually like, them showing how they live a “perfect life” leaves others wanting to do the same thing, but it is not always obtainable. Finally, it leaves people with anxiety, depression, and addition, the reliance on it leads to people constantly wanting more and not paying attention to real life causing them to be out of touch with it. In conclusion, the way people use technology today and the amount they use it has negative effects on the way they see the real world and leaves them out of touch with the real world.