Com 101 068
Are social networking sites good for our society? Social networking sites can be harmful because they can affect the lives of many for the worse by allowing cyber bullying and leading to short attention spans. Some people believe that social networking sites expose children to predators, increase vulnerability to computer viruses, lower worker productivity, and promote narcissism and short attention spans. Others believe that these online communities promote increased communication with friends and family, familiarize people with valuable computer skills, and allow contact with people from around the world.
First of social networking sites can be harmful because they allow for cyber bullying, which can affect a person in many ways. One way cyber bullying can affect a person is it can cause them to be anti-social by making them feel overly self-conscious about themselves and feel all alone. Another way it can affect a person is can make them feel depressed and not want to do normal everyday activities. Another way cyber bullying can affect a person is it can cause them to get to point of committing suicide or other self-destructive measures. According to the National Crime Prevention Council, Victims often experience a drop in grades, decreased self-esteem, and other symptoms of depression An example of a harmful effect of cyber bullying is the suicide of 13 year Megan Meier in 2006; when the mother of a former friend of Megan's allegedly created a fictitious profile in order to gain Megan's trust and learn what Megan was saying about her daughter. But the communication eventually turned hostile. A 2009 study found that 17.3% of middle school students have been victims of cyber bullying (Sameer Hinduja and Justin W. Patchin). Cyber bullying is one of the most important reasons why social networking is harmful especially for young children and teens....
Cited: Nathan Olivarez-Giles, "More Sex Offenders Joined MySpace Than Previously Acknowledged," Los Angeles Times, Feb. 4, 2009
National Crime Prevention Council, "What Is Cyberbullying?," www.ncpc.org (accessed Oct. 5, 2009)
National School Boards Association, "Creating and Connecting: Research and Guidelines on Online Social - and Educational - Networking," NSBA.org, July 2007
Sameer Hinduja and Justin W. Patchin, Bullying Beyond the Schoolyard: Preventing and Responding to Cyberbullying, 2009
Steve Almasy, "Social Media an Inviting Target for Cybercriminals," www.cnn.com, Sep. 30, 2009
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