Social Network Impact on Youth
Online social media have gained astounding worldwide growth and popularity which has led to attracting attention from variety of researchers globally. Although with time all generations have come to embrace the changes social network has brought about, teenagers and young adults are the most fanatic users of these sites. According to various research studies in the field of online social networks, it has been revealed that these sites are impacting the lives of the youth greatly. When using these sites such as Twitter, Facebook or MySpace, there are both positive and negative effects on the youth.
It is inevitable to ignore the fact that nowadays social network plays an essential role in teenagers’ lives. Most youths are spending at least an hour in these popular social media sites. Generally, 1 out of 7 minutes which are spent online by most of those who can access internet is spent on Facebook according to Shea Bennett. One may ask how spending all that time on the social media sites may have a positive impact on them. Well, social media helps the youth and any other user updated with what is happening around the world, help the teenagers stay connected and interact with each other even if they are many miles apart. This strengthens their relationship even if they finished school and moved to different locations they stay connected and update one another.
In addition, social media sites have provided a platform whereby the youth can create groups and pages based on their common discipline and end up building connections and opportunities for their respective careers by updating various topics to discuss. Youth who have been interviewed they say that social media has become their lifestyle and it makes their lives easier and efficient.
While on one hand social network sites seems to bring people together and connected on the other hand it creates social isolation in regard to BBC News report. As the youth tend to spend many hours on these sites, they rarely have face-to-face interaction. According various studies, scientists’ evaluation determined that social isolation can lead to a host of emotional, psychological, physical and mental problems which include anxiety, depression and somatic complaints among many others.
Other negative effects of social networking various people suggested included encouraging poor spelling and grammar, exposing underage to online predators, allowing spread of misinformation that is perceived as fact, decreasing productivity as those who are supposed to be working spend time in the sites to chat, provide a perfect platform for cyber bullying and providing details that increase risks of identity theft.
Social networking clearly portrays both positive and negative effects on the youth. It is decision of an individual to make whether to continue using the sites or not.
Impact of Media on Society
Media has continuously pervaded and defined society and has advanced with technology. The traditional forms of media propagation including television, newspapers, posters and mail remain as efficient as before the introduction of newer methods. Email, websites, e-zines and social online media have replaced expensive media production such as magazines and photographic paper.
Media imparts and shapes society’s opinion on the subjects of politics, business, culture and sports. It reflects on the freedom of speech and freedom of expression within a country. The positive aspects of free media far outweigh the negative effects that may occur. In the case of internet based media, control is difficult. Control of the Internet has however been imposed in China.
Media has the ability to bring relief to disaster prone areas while at the same time it may be responsible for nurturing prejudice against certain regions. For example, the perception that Africa is an extremely underdeveloped region although it is actually bustling with megacities. In the world of social media, gossip columns have the potential to ruin lives of individuals or boost their popularity. Advertising through modern media has led to the rise of fortune 500 companies.
It has been argued that media has resulted in a generation of couch potatoes who rarely engage in outdoor activities. It has become rarer to find someone who has good handwriting since typing is now the preferred skill. Conversely, media has brought about a positive sense of globalization and has been a good base for education. Children of today learn languages faster thanks to media. They may however be exposed to rated content which overall chews on the moral fiber of society. Checks and balances therefore have to be better enforced to protect little eyes and ears.
Conventional media speaks volumes when it comes to sustainability and reduction of the carbon footprint. People have to print less and travel less when information is promptly and conveniently availed at their doorstep, mailbox, inbox, television or blog. Though media is ubiquitous, it has created a demand for sensational coverage. Certain issues that headline today would not have been considered newsworthy a century ago. Hype is created, privacy is infringed on and reality is altered regularly in contemporary media.