This Is What I Think Of Social Media

Last updated on December 4th, 2019

Social Media
Social Media (Photo credit: Pixabay)

Social media has become intertwined with our lives. Some of us cannot imagine going a day without it.

Almost everywhere I go, I see people with their smartphones in their hand; they are either doing the following:

  • Taking selfies with the intentions of uploading their photos on Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and Facebook.
  • Updating their Facebook status.
  • Tweeting their thoughts on Twitter.
  • Uploading short videos on Snapchat.
  • Checking out boards of people on Pinterest with the intentions of looking for something interesting to pin on their board.
  • Uploading a picture of a meal that they are about to have on Instagram.
  • Chatting with a friend via the video calling feature on WhatsApp.

Those are merely some of the things that people utilise social media for.

How do you use social media?

It Is A Useful Tool

Now, in spite of all the negative things that people have said about social media, I still consider it to be a very useful tool.

Social media can be used in the following ways:

  • To share the links to one’s blog post.
  • To find out what is happening in the news (Today, most major broadcasting companies have their own social media accounts).
  • To promote various products.
  • To let people know what is happening in their part of the world in real time.
  • To upload inspirational quotes.
  • To keep in touch with loved ones.
  • To warn people of impending danger.

Those are just a handful of useful things that you can do with social media.

The God’s/Goddess’ truth is that social media can be utilised in a positive manner.

It Encourages People To Waste Time

It is no big secret, that a lot of us tend to check things out on social media when we are supposed to be doing something important; things like:

  • Cooking food for ourselves or for the entire family.
  • Finishing a project.
  • Taking care of a child.
  • Cleaning the household.
  • Getting ourselves ready for work.
  • Doing the laundry.
  • Washing the dishes.

Unfortunately, social media can be a huge distraction; especially if you lack the self-discipline to do the important things first.

Did you ever get yourself caught up in the goings on of social media when you were supposed to be doing something important?

We Are The Actual Product

Yes, my friend, we are the actual product if we have not paid a cent to use the services that the social media provided us with.

There is an old saying, “There is no such thing as a free lunch!”

If we are not paying any money to use the services provided to us by social media companies, they have to find a way to keep their businesses afloat (And, that is usually done in the form of selling our personal information to third parties).

We are inadvertently making those data brokers happy.

It Can Lead To Privacy Issues

The things that we like and dislike on social media says a whole lot about us; algorithms can create an almost perfect psychological profile of us.

Some technology enthusiasts have even stated that Facebook knows us better than our own family and our friends (And, I have a strong feeling that they are correct about that).

One very dangerous practice is leaving on your GPS tracking feature on in your social media settings; it can give away your current location as well as make a detailed record of all of the places that you have visited.

Do you know what can happen to you if this information fell into the hands of a tech savvy stalker?

One can only imagine the worst.

It Can Have A Negative Impact On Our Mental Health

Yes, it is true. Some people can actually develop mental health issues by using social media on a regular basis.

The following things can trigger mental health issues:

  • Cyberbullying that takes place on social media.
  • Comparing your life to others that you have seen on social media.
  • By coming across suicidal and self-harm content on social media.
  • Sacrificing sleep with the intentions of spending all night on social media.
  • By focusing too much on acquiring “Likes” on social media.

Social media can have a negative impact on one’s mental health; so please use it wisely.

It Can Be Used To Gain Knowledge

Over the years, I have gained a lot of knowledge via social media and there is a very high probability that you did too.

Social media can help us to acquire the following information:

  • Knowledge pertaining to installing Linux on our computer.
  • An easy method of learning a new language.
  • Methods of doing artwork.
  • Knowing what type of microphone to use for voice overs.
  • Learning how to cook.
  • Learning how to cut our electricity bill in half.
  • Learning online safety.
  • Learning about various cultures.

The above is just a small sample of the things that we can all learn via social media.

Have you learned anything new via social media lately?

Final Thoughts

Social media is somewhat of a double-edged sword; it can be used in our favour and it can also go against our best interest. Therefore, we must use it responsibly.

Parents can also limit the time that their teenage sons and daughters spend on social media.

Adults must lead by example. They must not tell their son or daughter, “Now, that is enough social media for the evening,” and moments after, take out their smartphones to see what has taken place on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

And, I genuinely believe that social media is here to stay.

Facebook and Twitter might not last forever; some new social media service will eventually takes its place.

Could you remember when MySpace, Friendster , Orkut and Google Buzz were ruling the social media scene?

Well, they had their time.

Today, people are more interested in Instagram, Snapchat and Pinterest.

In the future, other social media networks will be reigning supreme.

In regards to getting our privacy back, we can use the following social media services:

  • Mastodon
  • Vero
  • Diaspora
  • Ello

There is no need for you to continue being exploited by the other social media networks.

And, if you want, you can take the extreme route by going on a social media fast.

35 thoughts on “This Is What I Think Of Social Media

  1. Yep! There’s good and bad in everything. Social Media is still relatively new and so not enough is known about it’s affects yet, although I think you’ve done a good job here at pointing out the fors and againsts.

    Do you think that blogging is a form of social media too?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It is indeed double edged sword. I use my social media accounts for promoting my blog and nothing else. The charm has worn off. There is a lot of exhibitionism and insincerity on most of the forums.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Personally not using social media for couple of years now. It has a lots of benefits as you mentioned. I think problem is when you are mindlessly scrolling through it. hours and hours are wasted on that…

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Social media has gone wild! Like you mentioned, it can keep us so addicted that we forget what’s really important in life, like spending time with family and friends and doing what really needs to be done. Great post, Renard.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ah, dear Renard, I see babies in strollers playing with mommy’s smartphones. By the time these kids become teenagers, they cannot be weened from social media; it becomes a substitute for reality. You are right in outlining the dangers, but as an educator, I think the issue is much more serious than we imagine.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. To me, social media has more cons than pros, so I’m gonna disagree with some of the previous commenters. Similar to my comment about smart phones, social media can be really addictive! For those who like to stay connected to faraway family, pick up the damn phone and call them or email them! OR text them using your phone plan. You guys probably pay for the service if you have a phone (I know you have a phone….) so you might as well use the texting service.

    Even more so, social media encourages social comparison whether we like it or not. I bombed an entire semester due to the fact that something I saw on Instagram was so triggering that I couldn’t focus on school/clinical or perform at my best. Without getting too deep into that topic, it basically ate away at my soul and made me a miserable human being. I’m an extreme example, but all it takes that one person to make that OK life you’re living a less than ideal one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 😐 For starters, I am sorry that social media affected you negatively for an entire semester.

      Although social media is addictive, there are those who are not addicted to it at all.

      In my case, I use Pinterest to promote my blog posts (I am not addicted to Pinterest).

      I will agree that there are many cons where social media is concerned.

      Sending a text message with the intensions of communicating with family members far away is a good idea.

      In regards to sending an email, a lot of people are notorious when it comes to reading them and responding to them.

      I truly see nothing wrong with using Skype and WhatsApp with the intention of keeping touch with loved ones who are far away.

      Thank you for sharing your perspective!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have Pinterest but I prefer to write websites down on paper or on my phone. That’s just me though, and a personal preference. It’s easier for me to bookmark stuff than to click on 10 things on Pinterest to get to the thing I want. 🙂

        Yes, I’m a bit bitter towards social media and it was the last two weeks of school in April 2019. I was acing that semester up until the very end. Social comparison is the biggest thief of joy, and sadly I knew this person personally. I’ve been avoiding her ever since, which probably isn’t a healthy coping mechanism. I rather not see her face right now or have the temptation to look at her stuff.

        Sadly, the ppl who I gave my phone number and email to when I told them I was taking a hiatus from social media didn’t contact me after that. I feel like social media gives us a false sense of connection, until we no longer have these connections. The longer I stay away from social media, the easier it gets to stay away from it.

        WhatsApp is incredibly useful. I use it for communication purposes and students seem to prefer it when collaborating on projects and such. Skype is also a really useful tool.

        Thanks for replying, Renard. Have a great day! ☕️💕

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Thanks, Renard. This post explains the good, the bad and the ugly of social media.
    The thing is, social media can be very addicting.
    I became addicted to Instagram and just weeks ago I decided to control this by unfollowing a lot of accounts. Then my phone had a problem and I couldn’t sign into Instagram anymore. It was hard for me to live without Instagram but right now I don’t crave it as much and it feels good to come back to my calm life.

    Indeed, we need a social media detox or fast from time to time.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Good post Renard. Offers a balanced view and excellent tips when it comes to data collection. Social Media is a huge topic, and had enormous implications in every way, cultural, political, financial etc. Even medical. It’s a necessary evil when it comes to running a business, but one must wonder how it had impacted the happiness quotient. Are people more or less happy now that social media is abundant?

    Liked by 1 person

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