Social Media: The Overlord of 21st Century Relationships Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Vine, Instagram… The list goes on and on. Social media is an ever advancing part of modern society that has not only become a major part of most of our lives but also has played a key role in our relationships. These websites depend on user communication through the internet, which means that nothing is truly face to face. Every message, picture and post can be changed and modified the way the user would like, which can be viewed as either an advantage or disadvantage to the user.
Social media also offers convenience and sense of instant gratification as very conversation occurs immediately and quite literally, at the tip of one’s fingers, but is it truly worth the toll? The intriguing thing about this concept is that although one has so much control in what’s happening, they also have absolutely no control at the same time.
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All in all, this epidemic, due to its nature of regressing people’s social habits and causing psychological issues, is damaging to relationships. Extensive use of social media can affect people’s social habits for the worse.
Justin Marley, an acclaimed psychiatrist says, “… having another Internet technology that uses people’s ime might mean that they spend much less time with people in face-to face contact… people may become deskilled in using verbal and non-verbal methods of communication in real world interactions… Real world interactions might take longer, they might occur less frequently or Twitterers might be less likely to be included by their non-Twittering peers. ” When a person’s only contact with people is through the internet, if faced with real life situations they might not be able to communicate in a proper fashion.
This is because they are no longer used to normal colloquial anguage but instead text and chat language. This will make them awkward, which consequently makes it harder for them to maintain a relationship. Other evidence of deteriorating social skills is stated, “… we are hiding behind the cloak of digital text and spell-check to present superior versions of ourselves while using these less intimate forms of communication to accelerate the courting process. ” (Kutcher 100). When people hide their true selves behind a screen, they won’t be that skilled socially since they are not used to it.
If they are not able to properly socialize with the people round them, it could cause issues in their connections with other people. Along with causing a downgrade in human social skills, social media creates psychological issues in people, often ones that deal with their personality. Christine Rosen, editor and author, says, “A study… found that the more time and more friends people had on Facebook, the more likely they were to agree with the statement that others had better happier lives than they did, and the less likely they were to believe that life is fair. (93). When people get such notions of being unhappier than all their “friends”, heir self-esteem is lowered. This can create feelings of resentment within the person causing them to behave differently with others and thus negatively affecting their relationships. Another author writes, “The addictive use of social media may also stem from a fear of being misunderstood. We can edit and re-edit digital messages as much as we like until we decide we’ve perfectly conveyed our thoughts.
We can make ourselves sound intelligent, meaningful, or witty. Cell phones have become the taces ot their users, and messages nave become direct retlections ot our personalities. ” (Ghuman 110-111). This implies that people are giving themselves a new identity to the users they are communicating with behind the screen. When these people are asked to perform in real life, their social skills won’t be effective because theyre so used to portraying themselves as someone else that they aren’t able to represent their true identity.
This could cause a mint-personality or identity crisis for them, which can put a strain on many relationships. The results of this include misunderstandings and confusion, and neither can do good to the relationship. Many would argue that technology helps social media keep people onnected in an easy quick way. Philip Winterburn says, “[Social media] tools enable you to identify and Join self-organizing communities that share your interests. ” Social media can help find people who are similar to you and help broaden one’s social network.
It can aid people socially and professionally. In addition, some believe it helps keep memories intact, “Nearly four years later, I sometimes type his mail address in the search box in my Gmail. Hundreds of results pop up, and I’ll pick a few at random to read. ” (Armendariz 103). Social media offers an unlimited archive of all our online conversations, as long as you can access the account. It can prove helpful to some by showing previous important documents or even old chats with loved ones.
Joining social networks where you can meet people who share the same interests as you, is not a bad thing at all; it Just has its few not-so-minor disadvantage. Rosen writes, “[Social media] turns the private bonds of friendship and connection into a mass spectator sport, a game in which we are all simultaneously players and viewers (and one in which Facebook and other companies profit richly from our participation). ” (95). All your relationships and other intimate details of your life are laid out on a public forum for everyone to see, ruining the true essence of romance and friendship.
Also, while Gmail or other social medias provide an archive of your past conversations, “The power of a hand-written letter is greater than ever. It’s personal and deliberate and means more than an e-mail or text ever will. ” (Kutcher 100). The memories that may be stored with electronics would be no where as dear to one as handwritten love notes or anything similar. Social media is a significant factor in todays current relationships. Although it is an easy form of communication, it can cause a demotion of one’s social skills and personality disorders in people which negatively affects relationships.
The constant conversations via the internet can result in awkwardness in real life, thus negatively affecting communication and relationships. Moreover, evidence shows that it can cause anxiety and self-esteem issues in people which could even further develop into depression. Although this media can provide easy communication, it is public for everyone to see the intimate moments and may not be as dear of a memory as a andwritten form. Overall, the disadvantages of the use of social media in a relationship outweigh the benefits.