The internet is a constant reality for many people. It has become such an integral part of our daily lives that it has changed the way we interact with one another and how we perceive society as a whole.
In what ways is the internet shaping our society? The world wide web provides us with everything from information to news, entertainment, and companionship. Below, we’ll examine some of the more unique ways the internet changes society and influences our behavior.
The most obvious way the internet has influenced our society is through social media websites. These sites allow users to share information and connect with others through various mediums: writing status updates on your profile, posting a blog entry, sharing a photo, or uploading a video. Some social media sites have been linked to mental health problems because of their negative impacts on self-esteem and sense of identity.
When people are concerned about others liking their posts or keeping up with them technologically, it can lead to depression and other forms of anxiety. It’s difficult for people to break free from this cycle because it has become ingrained in their daily habits.
Social media makes it more challenging for people to establish meaningful and quality relationships in the real world because they can effectively interact with more people online than they would generally be able to meet in person.
Anonymity on the Internet
The option of being anonymous on the internet is a double-edged sword because it provides both positive and negative effects. It has been easier for users to engage in or explore certain activities online on many community support platforms. However, while anonymity can create a sense of community among users, it can also lead to negative behavior because people don’t have any accountability.
That’s why people have been able to cyberbully, share stolen photos and videos without the subject’s consent, or upload revenge porn. Even in professional contexts, anonymity is a significant concern because employers worry that the candidate they’re hiring could be hiding something on their resume.
Another significant way the internet has changed our society is through technology overload. The amount of information available on the web is so vast and diverse that people have spent decades establishing new methods to organize it. Organizational strategies such as search engines and social media platforms help users navigate information overload more efficiently.
However, this enormous wealth of knowledge on the internet has created a culture of dependency where people believe they can find any solution online: health issues, legal advice, or even self-help tips. Even when consulting with doctors, people will research their illness or symptoms online because they think that health information on the web is more readily available than it is.
People’s reliance on technology could be increasing stress levels and decreasing attention spans because there are just too many demands for our time in this day and age. Moreover, it is difficult to disconnect from technology because of its convenience.
Quality of Communication
The way we communicate has changed dramatically due to the internet. People primarily use instant messaging applications, emails, and social media platforms to interact online because it’s easier than talking in person or over the phone. But research has shown that these modes of communication don’t equate to quality interactions: they’re impersonal and can lead to misunderstandings.
Instead, if people were to communicate with one another using text-based communication, they would better understand the other person’s perspective and opinions. In studies that examined how politeness is expressed in email compared to face-to-face communication, researchers found that people communicated much less politely in emails because it didn’t require them to be respectful in their tone.
Learning with the Internet
The internet has become a primary educational resource, especially for people looking to learn on their own. People use online platforms to access courses that would typically only be available at the university level.
Though there are certainly benefits of using the internet in education, traditional learning methods are still preferable. Courses that are available online aren’t as interactive because it is difficult to determine the student’s level of comprehension through text-based communication. Additionally, research has found that students who learn with an internet course score lower on tests than those who take a traditional approach.
In conclusion, the internet has profoundly impacted our society in both positive and negative ways. While it has made information more readily available, it has also led to a dependence on technology. Though there are benefits to using the internet for learning, traditional learning methods are still preferable.