We Spend Too Much Time On Social Media And It Is The Downfall Of Our Society

We Spend Too Much Time On Social Media And It Is The Downfall Of Our Society

Maybe we should stop obsessing over it.
3761
views

Social media - most of us have some form of it. Between Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Youtube, and Facebook, average teenagers spend around six hours a day refreshing their feeds, while average adults spend about four hours a day doing so. If the average amount of awake time for an adult and teen is, on average, 16 hours/day, that means teens spend 37% of their waking hours on social media, and adults spend 25% of theirs doing the same.

So, numbers aside, people from all age groups, parts of the country, socioeconomic backgrounds, etc. waste A LOT of time on social media. I have one question: Why?

Sure, being the first to know something is fun. I get notifications directly to my phone from the AP Poll's Twitter feed just so I can get the poll as soon as it comes out, even though it comes out at 2 P.M. every Sunday. However, why do we obsess over knowing what our first-grade teacher's son's ex-wife's dog did today? Most of the time, we don't even know these people that we watch so closely. Sure, we have met them one or two times, or maybe we work with them but hardly talk, or something of the like. But, does that mean we really know someone? When a person meets someone new, they automatically check the big three - Facebook first, Instagram second, Twitter third. Then they follow/add them if they deem them worthy, and, if so, then they're friends forever. Wait, that makes no sense. They don't know each other; they just met. So why do they claim to be friends? Because it makes them feel good to have an extra person following their every move? Or is because they will have someone new to entertain them?

What about keeping around people who drive you crazy? I know that I, personally, have one friend on Facebook that I keep around just because her statuses are so ridiculous that they make me laugh. But why do we keep around the people that we constantly argue with? I see the same people fighting each other on social media every other day. Just come on you guys, block each other. My block list has 64 names on it, and I'll say that 99% of those people I've never had a direct issue with. Those people are annoying or I don't like them. I avoid the drama by nipping it in the bud. People enjoy the constant social media beef because it draws so much attention to them. They get 50 new friend requests and 20 new messages. It makes them feel like they matter, almost like they're famous. So, when someone is getting a ton of likes and shares and messages and retweets, people that follow them feel important too - like their friend is famous, even if they don't agree with whatever brought the attention on, or really even know the person.

We use social media as a way to legally stalk people. There are people who check their ex from three years ago's page every single day, even though they have both moved on and there's no reason to obsess over them. We check the pages of our crushes and our enemies. We check the pages of people who we wouldn't recognize in real life. Is it to make us feel like we have some sort of control? They don't know that I'm looking at pictures of their kids from two years ago, so I win? It's very odd.

Why do we have to post our every move on social media? We need to tell the universe what we cook, what we wear, what we watch, what we drink, and who we party with.

Every. Single. Day.

Doesn't that get a little intrusive? Or does it fill you with pride when someone comments on your chicken alfredo and says "mmm!"? It's about the importance. We judge ourselves by the likes, comments, and exposure we get. That's how we understand our own importance. So, people post the weirdest, little, seemingly unimportant things to get a few likes and some praise, because that's what keeps them going.

To answer the main question here about spending so much time on social media, we do so because it is an insane addiction. From the day you set up your account until the day you finally put it down for good, it can consume you. You fall in love with being the first to know something important happened. You obsess over drama, your own or someone else's. You get off on the likes. You love the power of knowing everything about someone without them knowing that you know. It causes so much harm that it shouldn't be normal. We don't really make friends anymore because we have so many online pals that we don't have time to go watch a movie or go bowling. We don't actually read the news, we rely on our social media accounts to keep us unbiased and constantly informed on everything (how wrong!). We don't even have to get to know someone before we date them, we just skim over their profiles and then - BAM! - we're together. But most of all, we waste valuable time on this bogus addiction because we just can't stop. Access to it is so easy, and it's always there. There's always something new. It's never boring. So why not look at it every time there's a break in a conversation or a long red light on the way to work?

I call for everyone to drop their social media accounts for a week. Do something new. Find a real-life friend. Don't let yourself depend on seeing Theresa's daily dog pictures and Joey's angry rants about the mail man. Change your outlook on what's important.

As a writer, I need social media to be my catalyst to get my work out there, so I keep it around. However, I keep my distance. I know it's addictive, so if I see myself getting too attached, I deactivate for a while. I think everyone should live in a similar way. Social media can be a great thing (a networking tool, an easy way to commincate with a large group of people, a place to share your creations, a place to buy and sell things easily, etc). We must stop allowing social media to be the downfall of society and make it be a force for good in the world.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

Popular Right Now

25 Responses To Your Friend Who Doesn't Text Back

Omg thanks for responding so quickly...oh, wait.
55663
views

We all have that friend. That friend we love to death, but if we are sure of anything in this world, it’s that they will not respond to your text because they suck at texting. That moment when you see “Read 1:04 p.m.” and you’re like “and???? Helloooooooo!”

These are 25 responses for that dear friend.

1. Lol thanks for tagging me in that FB post, now text me tf back.


2. OMG, wait you met Chris Hemsworth and he’s professing his love to you??!! No? Okay, then you can def text me back.

3. Hey I’m coming to help you since you obviously broke your thumbs and can’t respond.

4. Lolol thanks for responding. I’ll just continue the conversation with myself. That’s cool.

5. Good chat.

6. Yeah I wouldn’t know how to respond either, pizza topping selection is a thought-provoking process. Take your time. Meditate on it.

7. The classic: ^^^^^^^^^


8. I hope you’re writing me the 8th Harry Potter novel.

9. That was a yes or no question. This isn’t difficult. You wouldn’t do well with ‘Sophie’s Choice.’

10. Omg, did you pass out from the excitement of getting a text from me? Totally understandable. Text me when you regain consciousness, love.

11. Omg what a witty and clever response. Nothing. So philosophical.

12. The only excuse I’ll accept is if you’re eating guac and don’t want to get it on your phone. Because avocados are life.

13. I love it when you do that adorable thing when you don’t text me back for hours. So cute.


14. Okay I’ll answer for you. Yes, you’re going out tonight. Glad we had this convo.

15. In the time it has taken you to respond, dinosaurs could have retaken the earth.

16. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA

17. The dramatic but also very valid response: That’s what happens when you don’t respond for 30 minutes. People die.


18. I apologize for asking if you were coming to watch Bachelor, clearly the decision has caused you serious reflection on your priorities. I’m sorry to have caused you this existential crisis.

19. Sorry I annoyed you with my friendship. But like plz respond…

20. Your response time is longer than Ross and Rachel’s entire relationship. 10 seasons. You couldn’t text me back for 10 seasons?!!

21. Wait. You’re responding too fast. I can’t keep up. Hang on. Don’t respond so quickly. Jeez.

22. A subtle but perfectly placed gif. What will you go with? The classic eye roll perhaps or maybe a “you suck.”


23. Did you fall off a cliff? Wait, you don’t exercise. Pause your Netflix and respond b*tch.

24. Omg I WON THE LOTTERY. *responds* Lol now you respond…

25. And my personal favorite and go to, Did you text me and then decide to THROW YOUR PHONE ACROSS THE OCEAN?! Lol swim fast, I need an answer.

Cover Image Credit: http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8289/7759302068_fac2dfd31d_b.jpg

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

In A Technological World, Snail Mail Is Still The Best Mail

There's something magical about writing a letter and receiving one back.

18
views

We live in a unique age of technology. From emails to instant messaging and Skype to Facetime, connecting to someone across the country is as simple as snapping your fingers.

Despite all this, I love love LOVE snail mail. There's something so magical about writing a letter and sending it out into the wild with nothing but a stamp and some hope that it reaches its destination with no trouble.

There's something intimate about the "swwwff swwwff" of a pencil moving across the paper. Each movement, each mark I make releases my inner thoughts, capturing them in a way that I could never speak. My words are eloquent, my stories timed perfectly. If I can't think of a word, the awkward bumbling I'd do in conversation is not present. In writing, I can simply think of a new word!

Before I can begin writing, what paper will I use? Should I pull a sheet of notebook paper from my notebook, or should I type up my letter and print it on a nice sheet of copy paper? If I'm writing a quick note, will a notepad do? Is there any colored paper available; I just know my letter will look great printed on blue! The possibilities are endless!

After the writing, I fold the letter and stick it into my envelope. Like paper, there are a variety of envelopes to choose from. I currently have classic white, but my grandmother often sends hers in large, square, colored ones! No matter which envelope is chosen, it can be decorated with stickers or even colored pencils! When finished, fill out the address and then lick, stamp, and seal!

Once the letter is finished, a great sense of accomplishment washes over me. I am finished. I have completed my mission. Now all that's left is to set it into my mailbox with the flag raised or drop it off at the post-office.

Writing letters is only half the fun. The other half comes when I receive a letter back! There are few greater feelings than opening your mailbox and finding an envelope addressed to me with the knowledge that it's not a bill. After all, all that magic that was poured forth into writing the letter is now sealed up in the envelope, waiting to be opened.

When I open it, I'm swept into the minds of my friends and family. Their thoughts that I read on Facebook may be expanded upon in this piece of paper, or perhaps there are stories that they never mentioned online but have written to me in great detail.

Sure, I could have sent an email and called it good. Sure, I can keep up with my friends and family. However, writing a letter and receiving one back is the equivalent of watching a show on TV and waiting weeks in-between episodes. There's no binge-watching here. The joy comes from the process, from the writing to the waiting.

Friends, get yourself a penpal and start writing today!

Related Content

Facebook Comments