Are you a Social Media bug and like to keep yourself up to date with all the new trends and gossips? If you are someone who has traveled miles with your thumb by endlessly scrolling down the news feed of your social media platforms, let me make you aware of all the pros and cons of social media’s influence on you and on Netizens like you.
Influences of social media encompass every possible field including the daily lifestyle, relationships, education, and a person’s happiness too, as it becomes interrelated to its connections and their connections. Social media is a network of people with different mindsets, and these mindsets are significant in determining whether to get carried away with the negativity or to focus on self-improvement with the positivity.
*What does the word ‘NETIZEN’ mean?
To explain in simple terms for those who are not well acquainted with the word ‘Netizen‘, this word refers to those who are habitual users of the internet and this word has come into being by merging the two-parent words ‘Internet’ and ‘Citizens’. So yes, you and I are both Netizens.
These Netizens can be categorized into two groups:
1) People who extensively explore the opportunities and other useful resources to add value to their existing knowledge and to enhance their progress in life.
2) People who resort to social media and other sources of online communications to escape from their daily boredom and to get away from the grasp of loneliness.
Everyone seeks rescue from the everyday monotony of life and that is when social media comes in front of the line with an alluring offer to add spices in their lives. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Whats app, Twitter, and many other newly invented communication-based mobile applications, are ruling the minds of the users in both negative and positive ways. Every day these social media platforms get billions of users altogether, and it’s statistically proven that the users of Facebook alone cover 35℅ to 40% of the world population. The growth of digital media is unbelievable and its invasion in the lives of people is unstoppable.
Social media has become one of the necessities for our existence in this world and it’s inevitably creating a place into our daily habits. People use it for innumerable reasons for research, learning, gaining knowledge, befriending strangers, making new relationships, marketing, advertising, and the list goes on. But, to be honest, social media is not always used for beneficial purposes and it has several severe negative impacts on mental health and relationships too.
So, without any further ado, on the basis of the two categories of Netizens I stated above, let’s dive straight into the advantages and disadvantages of social media.
•ADVANTAGES OF SOCIAL MEDIA:
1) Dynamic Communications.
Social media is the most convenient platform to use for sharpening one’s communication skills. People can befriend strangers with the same interest and values and can form a community of like people. Also, through social media one can contact their friends and relatives anytime they want, irrespective of their physical distance. It helps to maintain a dynamic flow of communication.
“People are so far from each other, yet so close!”
2) Employment Opportunities.
Social media provides numerous employment opportunities for those who can seize the chances. There are many companies in Facebook and Instagram who are looking for interns for content writing, digital marketing, graphics designing, etcetera, which one can explore and excel in according to their preferred niche. Also, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram recruits potential and dedicated workers on many occasions.
“What is sought for can be caught, what is neglected slips away.”
3) Free expression of thoughts and opinions.
Social media provides you a platform to showcase different creativities, thoughts, and opinions because there is connected with the right people there will be an audience for everything. People can take initiative to join online forums for discussions on matters covering a wide range of subjects, people can participate in debates and several other competitions to enhance their own skills.
“Put your heart into your performance, there will be a crowd of the audience when you will look forward again.”
4) Increased marketing and advertising avenues.
Social media is the best when someone wants to grow their business or wants to get potential customers to sale their products or services by strategically planning the campaign and the circulation of their advertisement in an appropriate way by targeting to reach their ideal audience.
“Strategical planning is the key to unlock even the hardest of problems.”
5) Better opportunities to learn and educate oneself.
Social media offers a wider range of prospects to learn even outside the confinement of four walls of a classroom because the news feed of social media brings the world on one’s fingertips. There are many educational, personality development groups available in social media, which makes learning interesting.
“Everything seems interesting when it’s taught and learnt in an interesting way!”
Everything has pros and cons after getting along with the positive influences of social media, let’s move on to the negative influences of social media.
•DISADVANTAGES OF SOCIAL MEDIA:
1) Disrupted disciplines and routines.
Social media becomes a problem when it becomes an addiction more than a habit and consequently, people are drawn towards the applications instinctively. Students prioritize checking up on the updates of social media more than focussing on their studies, sometimes people are left with delayed and pending works because they spent more unnecessary time on social media than concentrating on their deadlines for the completion of their projects or works.
2) Detrimental to mental health.
Excessive use of social media deteriorates mental health. The trends and communication in social media often trigger worries, sleeplessness which can also extend to severe issues like anxiety, depression, and insomnia. The very common issue that the Netizens suffer from is FOMO which is the Fear Of Missing Out, often people start nurturing the insecurities in the heart of not belonging anywhere. These issues lead to pernicious consequences.
3) Victim of Cyberbullying.
According to the reports, over 800,000 cases of cyberbullying have been reported to date. People in social media create a fake account to use inflammatory and obscene languages, unethical comments are being addressed to pictures of both men and women, many pictures are illegally morphed to manipulate and dominate. When someone is pelted with false allegations and defamations, that person is left behind with an emotional wound.
4) Harms real-life relationships.
Due to increased usage of social media and online texting, face-to-face emotional connectivity is coming to a halt. Consequently, the relationships outside of online networks are weakening and falling apart because every relationship demands time and expression of affection and care. When people are more absorbed in fidgeting with the new posts and replying back to the texts online, they tend to forget that face-to-face interaction and communication is much more important to strengthen relationships which physically surrounds them.
5) Inauthentic expression of emotions.
In social media, people try to be pretentious by being someone who they are actually not. The abbreviations and emoticons for laughter are replacing the real-life lively laughter of people on finding something genuinely funny. Sometimes, people show concern when they are absolutely not bothered at all, just to keep up with the trend. These are eventually resulting in apathy, heartlessness, and indifference attitude to the sufferings of others.
Influences of social media are far-reaching and inescapable. Social media can both make and break your life and career and it is both your foe and friend. If it’s used strategically and properly one can achieve many goals in his/her life but if it is misused it can lead to serious destruction as well.
So, make sure you use it as your friend before it turns you into its foe.