Social media has had a profound effect on all aspects of modern life. Its popularity has impacted politics, business, entertainment, relationships, social movements, and our general perspective of the world that we live in. Thanks to social networks, we no longer have any communication barriers. We can easily collaborate and share information with people from different corners of the world on a single platform. However, social networks also have their downsides. Here’s the good and bad of social media.
It Has Eased Collaboration
Social media has helped draw millions of potential Internet users into becoming active participants. By popularizing the Internet, social networks have helped solidify the web’s original goal (i.e. increasing the website traffic, customers and sales), which is the decentralization of information sharing. Users can easily connect in real time irrespective of their location.
Connections can be made with several people simultaneously. It isn’t the case when you use traditional communication avenues such as phone calls. With social media, you can stay in touch with childhood friends and new people even without having met them in person.
A democratization of the Media
You can write anything you want on social networks, and anyone else will have the opportunity to see it. Everyone has been given a medium through which he/she can be heard – unlike with traditional communication platforms.
It has Enhanced Transparency
Platforms such as Facebook have forced companies to become more accountable to their clients by adhering to ethical practices of business. It has enhanced the access that you have to a company and its staff. Since you can easily share both negative and positive insights about its services.
Thanks to social media, companies have been forced to be more attentive to their public image. Besides this, government organizations and officials have also been made accountable and transparent to the public in their dealings.
Improved Customer Insight
Needless to say, consumers’ preferences towards certain goods and services change regularly. If you run a business, social networks afford you an inexpensive platform through which you can gain insights into your customers’ preferences.
Social networking helps narrow the gap between your company and its clients. Through feedback given on social networks, you can easily tailor your products and services to suit what people are really looking for.
Real-Time Information Sharing
Social networks provide you with access to information in real time. News content has been made more available. When it comes to dissemination of information, the immediacy of platforms such as Facebook and Twitter is something that traditional media platforms would never have offered you.
Negative Effects of Social Media
Inasmuch as the dissemination of information has been eased, social networks are now being increasingly used to spread false information. You will find as much fake news as real news on social media since there are users who always seek ways of capitalizing any media distribution platform to misinform the public. In addition, a large number of users on the social platforms often believe whatever they read without first establishing the truth behind it.
Social Media is Addictive
Extensive studies have revealed that the use of social media is just as addictive as drug abuse. If you are a Facebook addict, for instance, the first thing that you are likely to do whenever you are free is to log into your account. This is not any different from an alcoholic who will use every opportunity to get a shot of his/her favorite drink.
Obviously, addiction to social networks can be problematic given that it causes depression. Social media addicts also exhibit certain withdrawal symptoms when denied access to the platforms. It is just like the case with alcohol/drug addicts.
With the advancement of social media, cases of cyberbullying have increased dramatically. These networks facilitate cyberbullying since malicious users can hide behind the veil of their profile and attack others with careless abandon. The fact that you are not required to provide factual information when signing up. The most platforms have made it easy for cyber-bullies to infiltrate the networks. They, in turn, use pseudo accounts to attack anyone who seems to be opposed to their viewpoints.
A recent study established that social media users aim at moment-to-moment happiness and satisfaction rather than their long-term wellbeing. In addition, social media has conjured up a false perception of isolation. Rather than helping you connect with your peers, these networks may actually be undermining your social life. So perhaps it is worth considering giving Facebook a short break. You can find out how to temporarily or permanently deactivate Facebook here.
Inasmuch as social media has positively impacted on our lives, its side effects are scary and unfortunate. We have a platform through which we can understand the world that we live in in a better way, but still, we have paid a heavy price for it. The main question that should be lingering on your mind is how to use social networks for the betterment of your life.