There was a time when social media was just a pastime and played a very minimal part in people’s lives. But after a decade, it has turned into a daily necessity for most people. In 2010, only 970,000 people used social media, but it has reached 3.196 billion users globally these days.
Social media has been an essential part of our daily lives. For your reference, there are 2.74+ billion Facebook users these days. These users exchange 20 billion Facebook messages every month.
People’s love for social media platforms keeps on growing. Apart from using them for communication purposes, social media has also changed the game for businesses, governments, and lifestyles. However, its negative impact also continues to grow.
Adverse Effects of Social Media
First of all, let us discuss the adverse effects of social media on people. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram help people connect with their loved ones. Yet, too much use can trigger feelings of isolation, depression, and many more.
- Cyberbullying. Sadly, bullies have found a way to bully other people by leaving harsh and offensive comments. Cyberbullying leads to a series of adverse effects on someone’s mental health, which leads to depression.
- Self-absorption. Excessive sharing of your thoughts, as well as photos, can trigger self-centeredness. This unhealthy use of social media can bring your far from real-life connections.
- Vulnerability to digital marketing. Advertisements are everywhere on social media. If a person sees a new model of cellphone, he might instantly withdraw from his bank savings account so that he can stay trendy.
- Depression and anxiety. Social media platforms affect people in different ways. But if a person uses them too much, costing him to lose connections in real life, depression and anxiety might follow.
- Being uncertain about your life. Even though you’re aware that images in social media are altered and manipulated, you still can’t help but feel insecure.
- Poor health. Because social media have become a daily need, people spend too much time browsing their accounts and pages. As a result, they forget to eat on time and get an adequate amount of sleep.
Changing the World
On a positive note, social media changed the world for the better. It allowed businesses to grow and expand. It also helped in keeping people updated with the latest news and many more. Here’s how social media changed the world we live in today.
Before the popularity of social media, it wasn’t considered an essential component for businesses. However, since many people rely on the internet to check for products and services, having a social media page has become necessary.
According to analysts, it only takes a matter of time before people can start paying bills through social media platforms. Social media have already changed how banks and financial institutions provide customer service. In a few years, banking and social media platforms can work together to change how people manage their money.
Social media have also helped ordinary citizens voice out their opinions about the government. It allows leaders to have a broader knowledge of what people want and how to respond to meet their needs. It also allowed them to interact and connect with their constituents, allowing them to exchange opinions directly.
Helping people in disastrous situations is hard as it is. Moreover, determining the gravity of the situation used to be a challenge for responders. Thankfully, social media found a way to make things better and easier for everyone. For instance, Facebook has a safety check option where you can mark yourself safe during a disaster.
With just a click on the computer, you can find the latest updates about world problems such as climate change and human rights violations. For example, authorities are now using some content on social media as evidence to apprehend human rights violators.
Similarly, social media have also helped in sharing information about the impact of climate change on everyone. It has encouraged people to participate in promoting environmental care. Furthermore, it allowed people to join in finding wide scaled solutions for ecological challenges we face today.
Generally, social media platforms help people connect. But over time, its popularity drastically changed how people use it. While the thought is to promote connectivity and belongingness, social media poses threats to the mental health of many individuals.
Don’t forget that you have a life outside the digital world. Use social media wisely and never let it dictate how you live your life. Once in a while, take a pause and reflect on how social media affects you.