How Social Media Affects Our Interaction With Others

1342 words - 5 pages

Evolving technologies have both improved our quality of life and have made our lives easier. Innovations have allowed us to find a machine to solve every one of our problems. The current rate of technological development has allowed us to integrate many devices into our everyday lifestyle. However, there is a price that comes with the use of new technology. Instead of using social media as a mere tool to help us communicate with others, some of us have made this the only way we socialize. A recent study done on users from ages 18 to 34 found that “nearly half check Facebook minutes after waking up” (Marche 9). Stephen Marche only mentions the usage of social media early in the day, leaving out the percentage of users that are connected the entire day, even while sleeping. Our obsessive use of social media has placed us in a dangerous psychological state; we have become lonely because we interact with machines instead of real people.
Although technology’s purpose is to make our lives better, it instead prevents us from interacting with the real world. In “Television: The Plug-In Drug,” Marie Winn reveals that children’s relationships have deteriorated by spending many hours in in front of the television (443). On average children are spending more than 24 hours per week watching television (Hinckley). Since childhood is the prime time humans learn about relationships, instead of watching television children should be playing outside with friends, and talking more with their families. While television has had a negative impact on children, social media prevents adults from forming real relationships. A survey showed that only 20 percent of Americans had someone to confide in and 25 percent had no one to talk to (Marche 3). Having someone to confide in is only obtained through a long term relationship with someone that we trust. However instead of building genuine relationships, adults are spending more than three hours per day using social networks (MarketingCharts). Since as humans we are social creatures, we naturally seek companionship; nevertheless, it requires effort to build and maintain a network of family and friends. The ease and comfort of sitting behind a screen protects us from intimacy and therefore prevents us from getting our feelings hurt (Turkle 3). The strong need to have someone to speak to, has made us look for artificial companionship from machines and social media. This is why Japan built a humanoid robot that had the capability to speak, laugh and smile (Phys.org). Being able to have access to human-like robots for companions will reduce the need of having to meet people for the development of relationships. This tendency to seek companionship in machines and socially interact online is fueled by the desire of controlling relationships.
Evolving technology that allows us to stay virtually connected inhibits in-depth interaction. In her TED talk “Connected but Alone,” Sherry Turkle tells the audience that people deter away...

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