Not As Great As It Seems: The Negative Aspects of Social Media

Ravenna Kelley '23

There are many wonderful things about social media. 

“It’s a good way to communicate and keep up with people you don’t see often.” Says Harmony Quinn. And she’s absolutely right. It makes it easier to keep in touch with friends or family. But aside from that, it gives people a way to express themselves, can bring people together, building business, and for some, it’s the only place they can turn for advice. 

The most frequently used apps amongst this generation are TikTok (a platform for teens to post videos ranging from 15-3 mins long),instagram(a place to post pictures and videos for likes), and Snapchat(sending snaps or videos to friends that disappear after being sent). 

Unfortunately, for all the positives, there are many more negatives. 

For teens especially, social media has caused many more problems than it’s worth. On a minor note, social media is a huge distraction. It can take focus off of school or sports as sometimes it feels more important. Its constant availability makes it almost too easy for teens to get lost on the web. 

But on a more serious point, its brought about many issues. One being it sets an unrealistic standard.  Since you have access to so many people you may not know personally, their life will probably seem perfect. You may start to compare yourself or life to theirs and start asking questions like “Why isn’t my life like that?”. But the reality of it all is everyone has their struggles, you just don’t see them. People can edit pictures of their surroundings or themselves to give a false perception of their lives. They could make their bodies look different houses look nicer, etc. This is dangerous because it gives a very false sense of reality. Online, you don’t really know what’s real or what’s edited. 

Another huge problem is cyberbullying. Social media gives a sense of freedom not too many people are mature enough to handle. “I often feel very insecure when posting things on social media because of comments I’ve gotten in the past,” says Sophie Stumm. Social media may seem like a place to be yourself but it’s very much the opposite. It’s so easy to make negative comments on posts, create fake accounts, etc. Most of these are untraceable so unfortunately it’s hard to be held accountable. 

As useful and great as social media can be in many aspects of this technology dependent world, it has its extreme drawbacks. Are they worth it?