Effects of Social Media

Social media has become a commonly used medium throughout the past ten years, however it leads to adverse effects on the users. Social media is shaping the public in many ways, due to it being global and easy to access, it is important to know the effects. The world is changing through social media and the digital age, social leveling, and zombification of the users.

Social media, a simple and convenient way to keep in contact with family and friends, also have an alternate effect on the user’s actions and personality. The problem with social media’s effects began in 2003, when Myspace first started. As more social media platforms open, the zombification of the users gets continually worse. Since Myspace began, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Tumblr, and more have become popular and commonplace as they each were created. More social media is introduced, calls are being ignored and responded by texts, which made the socialization humanity needs, diminish. Some users can keep people far away from losing contact, but overall makes those and other relationships lose their momentum.

Since 2010, the amount of social media users has nearly tripled as of 2018. In 2010, there were just under a billion social media users (97 million), which has now gone up to 3.196 billion users (Perrin). The digital age is changing the way the world interacts, as the use of social media increases. The digital age has killed the concept of older mediums (books, letters, newspapers, etc). The newer mediums are considered livelier. Boluk and Lenz state “…in the digital age, although print culture is still a preeminent epistemological model, the quality of “deadness” in a text may be part of the ontology of digital culture” (Boluk and Lenz 144). While text may inherently seem more reliable, the “deadness” of it seems to cause the view to alter and for the digital age to surpass text.

Social leveling is a concept in which the population craves to not be noticed, showing herd behavior due to technology’s influence. Social leveling can result in getting unaffordable phones, doing something just because it is popular, and overspending on clothes or cars; just to all be the same. Boluk and Lenz state loss of reason from lack of control is how terrible social changes transmit pompously through the social body (Boluk and Lenz 143). Essentially, the popularity of certain prospects goes through a social system. Social media’s echoed influence causes users to do or say strange things for simply no reason other than because it is seen as the norm. Humans are social animals and crave acceptance. As the users become more surrounded by the aspects that are deemed popular or important at the time, they begin to rationalize making the poor decisions due to wanting to be uniform. It is referred to as social learning, and when members of a social group perform a task, the user’s brains reward them for following in the footsteps of the other members. Conformity in this manner is dangerous, because commonly what is circulating as popular to do, is negative in one way or another.

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