Social Media: To use or not to use

Twitter+is+just+one+of+the+several+social+networking+sites+used+worldwide.

Daniella Bock

Twitter is just one of the several social networking sites used worldwide.

Daniella Bock, Plaid Truth Staff

TikTok, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. More than likely will these ring a bell.  A vast amount of people worldwide use social media apps, especially students in middle and high school.  Now, with the recent quarantine, the effects of these networking sites may appear more prominently. All social media platforms share pros and cons, or positive and negative effects on its consumers. Quick examples of beneficial aspects include universal communication and the ability to express one’s self through a profile and posts (e.g. through Instagram). In opposition to these benefits comes the false information that can be shared and replicated. These are just snippets of the list that consists of the pros and cons of social media.

Besides creating expressive posts on networking sites, having the freedom to discuss and share ideas about issues that one believes are worth talking about poses as another great feature.  Additionally, users have access to thousands of other profiles, allowing them to possibly discover other influencers who take interest in similar things, whether that be a particular sport, for example, or an activity, like drawing. Moving onto the negative aspects of social media, a common situation that takes place is where a person compares themself to someone they see on an app, and this behavior can evoke feelings of discontent and insecurity about things like appearance, body image, etc. What’s more, is that if a user is constantly seeing other accounts, they may start to feel as if they’re missing out and not having as much fun as the other consumers who create posts on that platform.  “FOMO” is the official term for this.

Experiences will vary for everybody, of course. One person may see them as a way to stay connected with friends and loved ones, while another might utilize them for self-expression. “I do get to show my hobbies and interests,” senior Tanner Roessell said.  Junior Jeannette Jaimes also pointed out the convenience of universal communication. “Instagram has helped me when I am stressed, I like to text my friends there,”  Jaimes said.