Social Networking: A Negative Influence On Young Adults

2799 words - 11 pages

Social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Linked In have gained a widespread audience across the world. Although the original intentions of these social sites were positive, these mediums of social interaction now have negative effects.

Young adults aged 14 – 26 are the demographic which make up the vast majority of social media users and thus are the most effected by social media. Social media has negative effects on young adults. The use of social media by young adults has harmful psychological effects, creates antisocial effects, and negatively consumes time.

Social media has harmful psychological effects on young adults. Social websites generate cyber bullying, depression, and a lack of independence. Cyber bullying is extremely prevalent among young adult users of social media. Many young adults claim they “have seen more bullying over the internet than in real life” [6]. The prevalence of online bullying is attributed to the lack of consequences that follow. Cyber bullies tend to think that they will get away with their crime without any consequences and “81% of youth agree that bullying online is easier to get away with than bullying in person” [2]. Victims of cyber bullying have a lowered sense of self worth. This lowered sense of self worth has devastating effects:

According to psychologist Anthony Pellegrini, Bullying is a specific form of aggression and one that is used deliberately to secure resources like friends, self-esteem, and self worth. Sites like Facebook and MySpace make this easy through public posts and retaliations that encourage other mutual “friends” to join in. In fact, peer to peer harassment and bullying is the most common disadvantage to these sites. “This is where students are finding their identity and terrorizing each other. Cyber bullying is contributing to a generation of socially maladjusted adults and social networking sites are paving the way. The hostile environments on these sites have helped cause this generation of girls to become superficial and cutthroat by behaving more like or worse than boys." This electronic meanness can lead to depression and more serious, suicide. [3]
Bullying has been made widespread through social media and has been the root of many suicides in young adults. Suicide as a result of bullying is so widespread that “every ½ hour a youth who has been bullied will complete suicide.  Another estimated 19,000 victims of bullying will attempt suicide this year” [4]. These statistics are extremely alarming when looking at the number of young adults who are cyber bullied. The graph below breaks down the percentage of young adults who experience cyber bullying.

Young Adult Cyber Bully Victims
Half of all young adults have been a victim of cyber bullying; that means that half of young adults are at risk of committing suicide as a result of using social media. Is the use of social media worth a life? By reducing the usage of social media by young adults bullying will...

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