Good How Social Networks Influence Negatively In The 21st Century Argumentative Essay Example
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Social networking has become pervasive in the 21st century. Almost everybody has a presence in the social media and there are many situations where the effect of social media is prevalent on the perceptions and predispositions of a person, effecting them either positively or negatively. Social media is a tool that promotes and aids communication. It is a way for people to express themselves, manage friendships and family ties. Is social media helping or hindering these ties? This essay tries to argue that the social media is mostly effecting the human society in a negative manner.
Keywords: Social Networking, Communication, Society
The social media has helped us to stay in contact with each other. Distance between people no longer matters and we can keep in contact with each other irrespective of where they are. Social networking media is a way to keep in touch without any cost and this has helped their proliferation. Feelings, photos, and videos of important moments are shared with others who are geographically far away. Brands get feedback from customers and complaints about issues so that they can modify the way the brand markets or develops its product. It is easy to promote causes, raise awareness, discuss important issues and discover contrasting viewpoints using the social media. This paper discusses the negative impact of social media on the society.
The traditional orientation of humans towards neighborhood and village has shifted to a geographically agnostic orientation through social networks. Now the communication has become person-to-person. A new phenomenon called networked individualism has risen out of this. A study conducted by pew research showed that by the year 2020, 67% of Generation Y members would sharing their close personal information in order to stay connected.
A January 2014 Pew Research study shows that three fourths of adults who are online use social networking sites. A study by the University of Bergen has found that people who are insecure and anxious tend to use social networks more as they are not comfortable with in person communication. Larry D. Rosen conducted a study and found that Facebook use in adolescents corresponded with Narcissism, Personality and Bipolar Disorders, Sadism and Passive Aggressiveness. Excessive use of social media on a daily basis leads to anxiety in users. They also tend to lose focus frequently and this is across all grades.
Loss of productivity
Americans spend more than half and hour daily on social media. Forty percent of all teens and preteens spend nearly an hour a day on social media. When an employee checks a new tweet or a post, the employee takes about half an hour to return to the original task. Sometimes it takes them more than two hours to return to the original task. This leads to colossal waste of time and loss of productivity.
Stress and relationship problems
When a user has too many friends in the social media, it becomes difficult for the user to maintain the relationships. They feel stressed due to the increased fear of missing out important activities of their friends. They tend to compare their lives with the lives of the friends based on their posts of photos and videos on the social media, fearing that others are having fun and leading perfect lives whereas they are not able to measure up to those standards making them feel jealous which causes stress. When others post about stressful events in their lives, responding to them or reading about them also causes stress. Feelings of isolation, depression, and low self-esteem can result from passively scanning the social media and leads to social isolation.
Effect of Social media on Students
A study conducted showed that there is a strong negative relation between time spent on social media and the GPA of students. The time spent on social media leads to reduced preparation time for the class. Increased use of social media leads to ADHD, trouble having face-to-face conversations, increased brain and personality disorders, self-centered personalities and addictive behaviors. Half the students are cyberbullied and about one-third of the students themselves perpetrate cyberbullying against others. The social media sites also promote cheating when students post screen shots of standardized tests to social media sites allowing students who had not taken those tests to know the questions and answers ahead of writing the exams. Social media can lead to unsupervised interaction between students and teachers leading to inappropriate relations. Many College administrators scan social media regularly to find illegal behavior by students leading to a denial of admission.
Spread of rumors and unreliable information
Social media enables spreading rumors and due to the nature of the media, they spread very fast. A study shows that just under fifty percent of breaking news on social media turns out to be false. False rumors spread by tweets about the flooding of New York Stock Exchange and news about cutting off electricity to Manhattan in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy and many reputed news outlets picked it up and published the news causing problems to all. Amateurs giving expert advice in the social media is also prevalent. This encourages self-diagnoses of health problems leading to life-threatening results. Most social media users are gullible enough to fall for such so-called expert advice with disastrous results.
Lack of Privacy
Feds surveillance on the social media increased by 80% from 2010 to 2011. Many users do not know the right privacy settings and so do not set them appropriately. Most sites have complicated privacy policies running into lengthy pages, which are difficult for people to understand so people ignore them. There have been instances where people have lost jobs or found it difficult to gain employment due to their indiscretions on the social media. Militant organizations misuse the social media to recruit members. Social media sites also help in spreading the hate groups. Thieves and robbers may use the personal information posted on the social media to know the whereabouts of people and use it to their advantage. Con artists use the social media to fool impressionable youth and cheat them. The social media enables sexting, revenge porn, and underage porn. People tend to send risqué photos of themselves through social media, putting themselves in a defenseless position later. A user presses a “like” button not knowing that the publisher will get access to his entire demographic information. Marketers can utilize this information in ways that could be detrimental to the user. This particular behavior is an invasion of privacy. Users are unaware or may not care that their posts they cannot delete their posts completely, at the time they were posting them. Later, when they want to delete the posts, they find that this is not completely possible and are at a loss as to how to act. This could have unintended consequences for the user.
Lack of security
Inadvertently checking in with location-based services like Foursquare or Facebook can endanger military secrets by exposing sensitive whereabouts of top-secret locations. In 2011, a drug cartel murdered a Mexican journalist when she used Twitter to report about the crime perpetrated by the drug cartel. Users freely share personal details with other users who may belong to the same site or other sites that use the social media site for universal logging on. This could lead to unintended consequences.
Sharing of copyrighted material without attribution and payment can happen on social media. Users share photos, videos and other copyrighted material on Pinterest, YouTube and other social media without attribution or payment. The social media sites have copyright regulations but they are difficult to enforce. It becomes the responsibility of the creator to track and find the infringers of copyrighted material and take steps for retraction or compensation.
It is an indisputable fact that the effect of social media on our lives is pervasive. There is no denying the fact that there are many uses the social media has which renders it very effective for helping the society. Some of them like championing for social causes, spreading information that reaches all corners of the world in a quick manner, helping people who are behind strict censorship know about the latest happenings and view-points, create awareness about issues, promote brands, stay in contact with customers, market their brands and products are all possible through social media. Many people have traced and met their long lost relatives and friends due to social media. Social media is after all a tool and the how the tool is used is in the hands of the user.
A vast majority of social media users are of an impressionable age. There are users who may be older but they may not be educated about the perils of online life. There are people who target these kind of people to perpetrate crimes. It also happens that ordinary people can become different when the anonymity that online offers resulting in them becoming cyber bullies. Just as causes are can be championed, so can hate campaigns and recruitment for fundamentalist organizations happen. The effect of social media per se on the user or society can be bad because of the nature of social media. Its effect on productivity of the employees, the employability of students or career of the students is also huge. It can both be positive and negative. As usual, the negative effects may be long lasting and sometimes leading to suicides. Social media connections lack emotional connection compared to a face-to-face conversation. This leads to people being hurtful on social media. You can see this in the discussion forums where users make hurtful comments, which they would not have made in person. Using the social media to convey their feelings leaves them susceptible to forgetting the skills of face-to-face communication skills. The feeling expressed can sometimes be inauthentic, as the other person cannot really know it since they are not face-to-face with the user. The social media interaction reduces the understanding and thoughtfulness. It also creates a skewed image of ourselves as we keep posting pictures and statements that show us as perfect light and start believing that. Everybody should be aware of the pitfalls of using social media and educate others so that they can stop falling prey to these.
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