The pow­ers of so­cial­me­dia


found 68 per­cent of the world uses so­cial me­dia, pro­vid­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for mar­keters to reach po­ten­tial cus­tomers as well as for peo­ple to share tal­ents and stay con­nected with friends and fam­ily. So­cial me­dia can also be a trap for su­per­fi­cial­ity, breed­ing neg­a­tiv­ity and hin­der­ing face-to-face in­ter­ac­tions.

Peo­ple post to make oth­ers jeal­ous, peo­ple get jeal­ous and peo­ple make them­selves look dif­fer­ent on so­cial me­dia than in re­al­ity. A cy­cle is cre­ated where envy drives some­one to share a post to make them­selves ap­pear bet­ter off than they re­ally are. This can cause the growth of envy in an­other per­son, and the cy­cle con­tin­ues.

What starts this cy­cle? The pos­i­tive or neg­a­tive emo­tions of bil­lions of users with bi­ased opin­ions, per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ences or mis­in­for­ma­tion. For ex­am­ple, peo­ple have posted neg­a­tive com­ments about the Brigham Young Univer­sity foot­ball sea­son, say­ing BYU has fallen be­low ex­pec­ta­tions and shouldn’t be ex­cited about a bowl game. These opin­ions cause anger in­stead of hap­pi­ness for the suc­cess of the BYU pro­gram.

As you can see, it’s much eas­ier to com­mu­ni­cate with oth­ers via thumb then tongue. This builds a wall that de­creases the qual­ity of gen­uine face-to-face in­ter­ac­tions. Why? It is sim­ply eas­ier. It al­lows a per­son to hide or ex­pose who they re­ally are.

To con­clude, so­cial me­dia can be a great tool to share any­thing with any­one; how­ever, it cre­ates a cy­cle open­ing the door to share opin­ions and ex­pe­ri­ences but closes the door for qual­ity face-to-face in­ter­ac­tions.

Nathan Larsen


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