Table Of Contents:
1. Assessment Cover Sheet
4. Reference List
Today, we live in an extremely well connected world. All it takes for us to connect with our loved ones is a couple of mouse-clicks and there we have it – staring right back at us, our families, our friends, our lover or even our dog. And we make time, we take time to sit there everyday, in front of our computers so we can make it possible.
It’s all quite wonderful, almost magical. But in my opinion, the biggest drawback to all this ‘connectivity’ is how we are becoming increasingly dependent on technology.
In my essay, I will show you exactly why I feel social media has affected us adversely – emotionally as well as physically.
“As human beings, our only real method of connection is through authentic communication. Studies show that only 7% of communication is based on the written or verbal word. A whopping 93% is based on nonverbal body language.” (Tardanico, S,2012)
The Sauder School of Business from the University of British Columbia performed a study using fake stock exchanges and found those people who communicated through text messaging were more likely to report deception.(Storrs, B, 2012)
It is, without a doubt, easier to be ‘meaner’ while texting. It also makes it easier for us to be brutally honest because we are unable to see the other person’s reaction.
According to the Cybersmile Foundation, one in three children in the UK suffers from cyber-bullying. (Kampfner, C, 2012)
Safety is another concern whenever we go online. Shopping online might seem like a boon but it does come with its consequences.
Identity theft is nothing new. The Federal Trade Commission's Consumer Sentinel Network received 1.3 million fraud complaints in 2009 alone, with 21 percent reporting identity theft. Sixty-two percent of people said the Internet, largely through e-mail, was the source of initial contact.(Leslie, K, 2010)
Another downside to social media is the spreading of falsified facts and news. For example, the infamous, ‘End of The World’ story. This news came in the forefront last year and garnered several believers. Currently, there are hundreds of websites feeding false information about the ‘End of World’. This obviously gives birth to groups of people and communities that believe in myths.
Having said that, social media also helps in spreading information that is actually true. It helps and continues to help in bringing the latest happenings from around the world. It makes people aware.
But at what cost?
According to The WHO (May 2012), “Worldwide obesity has more than doubled since 1980. More than 40 million children under the age of five were overweight in 2010. Obesity is preventable.”( WHO, 2012)
Today, there are more children who sit at home and play games online rather than going out to an actual playground and having a real conversation with other children. Not only does that affect their health but their ability to communicate in real life situations.
Social networks make it easier to manage lots of relationships but harder to manage close relationships. It becomes difficult to manage multiple friendships because whenever you are on the network your attention is diverted between everyone in your message stream or chat.(Waddington, S & Owen, C, 2012)
We, as a generation are reliant on technology rather than self-reliant. The saying ‘ there’s an app for that’ is evident of where we are as social beings.
In conclusion, I would like to say that yes, I feel, social media’s have affected us adversely and we definitely need to switch off and live a more real and human life as it was intended to be.
Kampfner, C, October 26, 2012, “The growing problem of...
Bandura, A, 2001 ‘Social Cognitive Theory of Mass Communication [PDF] [Online] Available at http://www.dr-eskandary.org/download/Social%20Cognitive%20Theory%20OF%20MASS%20COMMUNICATION.pdf , [Accessed 22 october 2012]
Chueng, M.K.C & Thadani, R.D, 2011 ‘Online Social Network Dependency: Theoretical Development and Testing of Competing Models’ [ Online]
Available at - http://csdl2.computer.org/comp/proceedings/hicss/2011/4282/00/07-05-11.pdf [Accessed 25 October 2012]
NASA, 2011, ‘2012- Beginning of the end or Why the world wont end?’ [ Online]
Available at http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/2012.html , [Accessed 22 october 2012]
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