The impact of social media on young adults

Topics: Facebook, Sociology, Social media Pages: 5 (1422 words) Published: March 24, 2014


Study Skills Workshop Assignment
Essay Topic: The impact of social media on young adults

Student: Gorana Gantar
Lecturer:

The impact of social media on young adults

This essay is going to look into the impact of social media on young adults, how widespread it as among this generation, and how strong is its influence. Young or prime adults, according to Erik Erikson's stages of human development, is a person in the age range of twenty to forty, engages mainly college students, workers and ones still looking for a job. We can think of regular media being a one-way street where we can just obtain the information without being able to give our thoughts on the matter. Social media, alternatively, is a two-way street where information flows both ways, giving us the ability to interact and communicate. Social Networking Sites like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Bebo, Hi5, Last.FM., have the major role in young people’s lives. Accoring to the PEW resarch project (Lenhart et al., 2013), the specific sites on which young adults maintain their profiles is Facebook, leading with 71% of users, and MySpace, almost keeping up with 66%. They are less likely to have a profile on the professionally oriented network, LinkedIn 7% . From an article Youth Engagement and Social Media Guide based on Youth Work and Social Networking Final Report (NYA, 2008), as main reasons and purposes of creating and using these profiles we can mention: Keeping in touch with friends and acquaintances; 


Developing new contacts often with friends of friends, or people with shared interests;
 Sharing content, engaging in self expression & exploring identity;
 Hanging out and consuming content including commercial and user-generated content;
 Accessing information and informal learning; 


Participating in informal groups, and formal youth engagement opportunities;
 Beside social networking sites, they are some other, less common types of social media, like Social Bookmarking, which involves interacting by tagging websites and searching through websites bookmarked by other people; Social News where is interacted by rating articles and commenting on them; Social Photo and Video Sharing, used to interact by uploading photos or videos and commenting on other users submissions, or Wikis, involving adding articles and editing existing articles. Just a decade ago, young people could have only been in touch and socialize with friends and peers when hanging out at school, or meeting up in town. Nowadays, social media tools are woven into many young people's day-to-day lives. In conversation and communication with their friends and peer groups, young adults are using a wide variety of different media and media devices every day. Through instant messaging, social networks, online games etc, they are “constantly connected”! The impact of Social media on society, and young adults as a most affected population, has been that strong that „real“ and „online“ world cannot be distinguished any more, the online world IS real, and has a great importance on lives of young people. Even more, it has become unavoidable to participate it, almost in any aspect of life, if wanting to be „up-to-date“. Where young people have limited access to technology their 'digital exclusion' may add to 'social exclusion'. However, as social media brings about changes in society - it does impact upon all young people (Sokol, 2013). As we we can't always predict and control how people will use it, there are many advantages, but as many disadvanteges arising, in aspects of socializing, relationships, health, life quality and job hunting. Socializing wise, the main question is: Is social networking working in favour of sustaining pre-built personal relationships, and making new friendships and aquistances, or is more tending to ruin face-to-face relationships with close friends and families, increasing just the number of unreal and...

References: Chambers, D. (2013) Social Media and Personal Relationships: Online Intimacies and Networked Friendship. 1st ed. London: Macmillan Publishers Ltd.
Lenhart, A., Purcell,K., Smith A.,, Zickuhr, K. (2010) Social Media and Young Adults, Pew Internet and American Life project, February, pp. 3-5. ( Online). Available from: Pew Research Center. http://www.pewinternet.org/~/media/Files/Reports/2010/PIP_Social_Media_and_Young_Adults_Report_Final_with_toplines.pdf (Accessed 1 December 2013).
Lee, S. (2012) 5 Effects Social Networks Have On You. (Online) Available from: http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/science-you-and-social-media/ (Accessed 4 December 2013)
Constant connection: The Psychological Impact of Social Media. S. Sokol Oakland University journalism students covering news of interest in metro Detroit, February 2013. Accessed 3 December 2013. (Online). Available from: OU Bureau. http://www.ounewsbureau.com/?p=4314
Waldman, J. (2013) Career enlightenment: Is Social Media Helping or Hindering Young People’s Career Prospects?. (Online). Available from: http://journalistsresource.org/studies/society/social-media/social-networking-young-adults# (Accessed 3 December 2013).
Youth Engagement and Social Media Guide: The Impact of Social Media. (Online) Available from: http://www.practicalparticipation.co.uk/yes/what/what_does_it_change (Accessed 4 December 2013)
Social Networking: Advantages vs. Addictions. (Online) Available from: http://childrefuge.org/social-media/the-addictive-nature-of-social-networking-good-and-bad-sides.html (Accessed 4 December 2013)
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