On the surface, it appears that social media has found a way to connect the world in a way unlike ever before. Individuals that live in different countries are able to communicate with the click of a button and can be updated in real-time on the lives of their peers. An argument could definitely be made that social media has brought the world together; however, how truly “together” are we when a majority of our communication is through computer or phone screens. According to Forbes, social media has caused its users, particularly those in the millennial generation, to have a new variety of issues in their friendships and relationships.
These issues arise from our increased need to be “liked” online. In a recent Kaspersky Lab study, 42% of social media users “admit to feeling jealous when a friend’s posts receive more attention than theirs”. Young people have become so hyperaware of the opinions of their peers through these likes that if a friend gets a greater number of positive responses on his/her post, 58% of users have admitted to being “upset or embarrassed”.
/ nvm go like my picture on instagram pic.twitter.com/ByfIZebHxp
— GiVE ME UR FUCKiN MONEY / PRiNCE PHiLLiP (@HARLEYiSOVER) September 12, 2017
This is where some of the many issues with social media lie. In our attempt to get connected with each other, a need to impress others and receive their virtual approval has come to the forefront of our online identity. Although social media has played a role in developing and maintaining relationships, it is also creating the idea that online relationships and presence is more important than those in the real world.
If you don't like my picture on insta then I don't like you in real life
— Tannya Stevenson (@itsTannyaaa) September 10, 2017
If you’re interested in learning more about social media’s effect on our ability to communicate, make sure to click here!