The Negative Effect of Social Media on Society and Individuals

The Negative Effect of Social Media on Society and Individuals
Blog post 2 : Sarah Badran

Photo Credits:Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

Social networking allows users to easily meet and communicate.
As the world moves towards the age where social media dominates the way people think and act it’s somewhat scary to think about the negative side to it all. A recent article in the Small Business Chronicle dove into the negative effects of Social Media and really got me thinking.
I am a bit older than the average college student. I grew up in a day where social media didn’t even exist. Although I do see ti as a great innovation it still worries me about how its impacting the impressionable youth.  When I was young relationships were founded on actually meeting a person face to face, talking to them and making a connection.
Nowadays things are much, much different. People have the ability to have hundreds of “friends” but not really know most of them. This seems really odd to me but that’s where we dive into the first point the article makes.
The False Sense of Connection:
“According to Cornell University’s Steven Strogatz, social media sites can make it more difficult for us to distinguish between the meaningful relationships we foster in the real world, and the numerous casual relationships formed through social media. By focusing so much of our time and psychic energy on these less meaningful relationships, our most important connections, he fears, will weaken.”
Another negative effect that has been surfacing is cyber bullying. Everyone has an opinion but it seems people are much braver when it comes to posting it on the internet. It has been common especially in the youth to partake in the cyber bullying and it has led to many problems that people are overlooking.
“The National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center estimates that nearly 30 percent of American youth are either a bully or a target of bullying. Advances in technology have now extended harassment to cell phones, social media websites and other online avenues that are contributing to an alarming number of suicides.” (nobullying.com)
Kids are vulnerable to the practice of cyber-bullying in which the perpetrators, anonymously or even posing as people their victims trust, terrorize individuals in front of their peers. The devastation of these online attacks can leave deep mental scars. Cyber-bullying has spread widely among youth, with 42% reporting that they have been victims, according to a 2010 CBS News report.

Lastly I think the biggest negative thing to come out of this is our loss of privacy.

Social networking sites encourage people to be more public about their personal lives. Now companies are using this information to profile us and sell us off as categorized beings.
It will be interesting to see how this topic progresses but my hopes is that the facilitators keep in mind the negative side of it and try to prevent more from happening. Social Media should be a positive thing, lets keep it that way.
Article /Sources:

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Mayborn Social Media Class

This is the official class blog of Journalism 4270/5330.001, the strategic social media class of the Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas. Contributors are upper level undergraduate and graduate students, mainly journalism majors. Our Twitter hashtag is #untj4270. All content is student or instructor generated, and opinions are our own. Material is copyright by individual authors. Comments are welcome and encouraged.