Scroll, scroll, scroll… this might seem innocent but scrolling on social media has more negative consequences than your fingers hurting. Social networks are a big part of our society but are the effects of it positive or negative? By examining the spread of false information, correlation to brain disorders, facilitation of cyberbullying it is evident that social networking is negative for our society.
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First of all, social networking aids the spread of unreliable and false information. On most social sites it is not certain whether the information is correct or not. Since everyone as the access to alter the information some of the information gets omitted. A study from MIT revealed false news was 70% more likely to be re-tweeted than true stories, and lies spread six times faster than the truth. Furthermore, the number of people who see the news that is true is lower than those who see the false news. As a result of this, most people in our society believe the wrong information and this can affect our daily lives in more ways than one.
Secondly, the reason social networking is negatively impacting our society is its correlation with mental health issues and brain disorders. Constantly being on social media causes your brain to easily be distracted and lowers your attention span. This is because of all of the diverse information on these sites. Researchers have found that “”interruptions due to phone notifications can cause inattention and hyperactivity in the general population.”” Social networking negatively affects humans mental health because it often leads to anxiety and depression. This can be illustrated by a University of Pittsburgh study that found social media use was “”significantly associated with increased depression”” among adults aged between 19 and 32.
Thirdly, social media facilitate cyberbullying. Since social media allows people to be anonymous, this enables them to easily post harmful information. According to Procon.org, 52% of students have reported being the victim of cyberbullying with 84.2% naming Facebook as the site through which they have been bullied, followed by Instagram (23.4%), Twitter (21.4%), and Snapchat (13.5%). In fact, 81% of young people think bullying online is easier to get away with than bullying in person. The results of social media cyberbullying can be detrimental. Specifically, cyberbullying increases the likelihood of children attempting suicide.
Some people may argue that social networks spread information faster than other networks. However, as stated earlier, most of the information that is spread is false and unreliable. In addition, children may endanger themselves by not understanding the public viral nature of social media. Others might state that social networks facilitate face-to-face interaction. Although social media does the opposite, it causes people to spend less time interacting face-to-face. This can be proven by a USC Annenberg School study found that the percentage of people reporting less face-to-face time with family in their homes rose from 8% in 2000 to 34% in 2011.  32% reported using social media or texting during meals (47% of 18-34-year-olds).
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Social Networking in Our Society. (2019, Dec 31).
Retrieved February 7, 2023 , from https://studydriver.com/social-networking-in-our-society/
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