Everyday, more than one billion people connect with each other using social media. People post pictures on websites like Facebook. They like and share videos that they have watched on YouTube. And they send messages to friends using programs like QQ Messenger. In just the last 10 years social media has completely changed the way we communicate. And it has let us communicate with people around the world But how does using social media effect us?
Also scientists from many different countries have studied this question. They have looked particularly at it’s effects on human emotions and relationships. Moreover some studies show that using social media can cause depression. And other studies suggest that it can negatively affect our relationships.
The main positive effect of social media is also it’s purpose: connection. Modern life can be very busy. Many people work long hours. Other people live far away from family and friends in different cities or countries. Today many thing separate people. Also it can be difficult to stay connected with people that are important to us.
“Social media’s very fast rise is a loud and growing attempt by people everywhere to connect with each other. They are connecting even with all the barriers that the modern world forces on our lives.”- Zeynep Tufekci
Social media can also help people make new friends. Often, these are friends they would not have met without social media. It can also help people spread news about major world events. This moreover let people react more quickly and even help.
It is clear that social media has many positive effects. But some scientists warn that social media can also harm people. The Public Library of Science published a major study in 2013. This study looked at people from the United States who used the social media website Facebook. The study found that more these individuals used Facebook, the less they are satisfied with their life. Also the scientists observed that this could cause feelings of depression.
Moreover when people put things on social media, they only post the best things about their lives. They talk about fun things they are doing. Or they post pictures that make them particularly good. So when people look at Facebook, they are only seeing the best things in their friends’ lives. This can make them feel less satisfied about their own lives. And also they can begin to feel envy because their friends’ lives look so perfect.
Researchers also noted that Facebook relationships are different than normal relationships. When someone sees a friend regularly, they see both good and bad in that person’d life. But if someone only see a friend on social media, they will probably only see part of their friend’s life. This makes social media relationships very different than normal relationships.
Social media is not going anywhere. But we may need to think more carefully about how we use it and how it makes us feel. So how do you feel when you use social media? Do you think it improves or hurts your relationships? Would you ever consider stopping using Social media? Tell us what you think. You can leave your comments on our website.