Are social media addictions healthy in nature? Do they pose less danger than other addictions, which gradually turns into some kind of damage? It can be disputed either way, but the fact that it qualifies as a discussion already raises alarm bells. The truth is fairly simple, these digital platforms can be addictive, whether they pose a threat or not. Another question that can be answered is how social media gets people to check their status every five minutes.
Exploitation Of Insecurities
This sounds rather harsh. In fact, it’s something that will ordinarily be associated with an abusive relationship, but there’s no better way to put it really. They give people the opportunity to embellish what they feel they lack. In other words, those who love attention will obviously fall in love with constantly sharing their experiences. At the same time those who seek attention can finally be heard on some level, whether it holds any truth or not.
The Network Effect
A piece was published by Cornell Information Science, about the ability to quit social media for 99 days. A site was designed that challenged people to avoid all social media platforms, and although many people participated, most people fell off the wagon in a couple of days.
Now, the network effect works in two ways. The first is based on the ever popular “everyone is doing it” frame of mind. A fear is created that a person will go crazy if they don’t know what’s happening with their Faceboook friends every 2 hours. Some people can’t even start work in the morning if they haven’t browsed their social profiles yet. It’s the same concept as having the latest smartphone.
Secondly, people are forced to use social media whether they want to or not, because the rest of the family only communicates there. The age of writing letters and waiting weeks for a reply is officially extinct. Nobody has the time anymore, especially if a photo and video can be added to the message.
Social Media Knows Everything
Once again, this sounds a little excessive. How can social media possibly know everything? For those who haven’t realized it yet, search engines and social media platforms are all invested in tracking user activity. How long a user is logged on, where they spend their time most, what they will probably search for next, these are monitored by algorithms.
Now with information such as this, wouldn’t it be easy to personalize the experience? People store some of their most personal details on their phones and they likely share it with at least one person digitally. But there are more basic ways involved with social media addictions.
For example, providing users with instant notifications that other people find their posts interesting. Now there’s curiosity – who are these people and what did they say?
Social media platforms are rigged with all types of small engagements that keep the user coming back. They use games, special channels, interesting suggestions and anything else that can entertain the user.
Then There’s YouTube
Among the giants of social media, YouTube is probably Zeus. And when it comes to social media addictions, look to this one first. Why? Because everyone gets to be on television. Statistics show that more people are spending time away from conventional channels. Now they prefer YouTube, because it’s easily accessible and features reality television.
This type of platform takes everything people love and throws it into one spot. But it has the added bonus of creating the most superstars. For the most part new artists make their debut on YouTube before agents know they exist.
Are Social Media Addictions Dangerous?
There’s no getting around the fact that this type of addiction holds its share of danger. Apart from spurring high depression and suicide rates among teens, it also becomes a danger to individual safety. There have been several situations where people had to hide in their homes because they received an overload of death threats via social media.
On the other side of the coin there are good aspects to consider. For example, actually helping friends and family to keep in touch on a more personal level. But as comfortable as these platforms make people feel, one cannot help to wonder how healthy it really is.