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The library of essays of Proakatemia

The impact of social media on communication

Kirjoittanut: Marcos Homar Heinonen - tiimistä SYNTRE.

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In the digital age, social media has transformed the way we communicate. It has broken geographical barriers and changed the way we interact both on personal and professional levels. This essay will explore the impact of social media on communication and highlight both its positive and negative aspects.

Social media has made connections with friends and family much easier regardless of where you live in the world. Real-time connectivity has made it easy for people to share their lives and get to know what other people are doing. There are more ways than ever to express yourself to a global audience. Thoughts, feelings, and experiences are now shared for all to see. These expressions can be shared through photos, videos, and stories in a matter of seconds.

Social media has enabled real-time communication. News channels have benefitted from fast communication and therefore use social media as one of their primary communication channels. The news hits social media feeds before it can be seen on the TV news. Constant updates are being uploaded to social media as its coverage is massive compared to more traditional ways of communication. Raising awareness about social and political issues has become visible through social media and the vast majority of the biggest movements around the world have been started thanks to social media.


Critical thinking

The large amount of information we receive every day means that not everything can be verdict and trustable. That is why it is very important to have critical thinking. This means that you question, analyze, evaluate, and make a judgment about what you read, hear, say, or write. Critical thinking doesn’t mean that you focus only on the faults and think negatively. It is for you to clarify your thinking and break down the received information, interpret it, and use that to conclude an informed decision. People who utilize a lot of critical thinking are said to have a critical thinking mindset. The skill of critical thinking is always learned and developed through practice. Academically speaking critical thinking is related to arguments and how to think critically about others’ arguments. Not blindly believing in everything you hear and see and being able to have contra arguments that back your arguments as the most logical ones.


Privacy concerns

Privacy is another big topic on social media. Where does our information end up? The most commonly used communication tools people use are encrypted meaning that the information or data is changed into a code that people cannot understand. Even though there are safety measures information has and will be leaked. Privacy concerns are talked about, and some companies have been in trouble caused of selling customer data forward. Personal data is personal which means it shouldn’t be leaked anywhere. Companies that have people’s personal data on their hands have a huge responsibility to keep that data from getting into the wrong hands. Most companies collect data which in itself has nothing bad. The problem lies in whether the company tells its customers where the data ends up and if they sell the data forward. Companies share the data they collect in different ways and next, we are going to observe how some of the most popular companies use the collected data to their benefit.

Facebook should not be a surprise for anyone as a data collector. The data from interactions and messages in the app are being sent to partners and individual advertisers to help them personalize advertisements for the 2.78 billion monthly active viewers. Google also does this with all its services. Searches, E-mails, maps, and videos are all great ways for Google to collect data which they share with their active partners for personalized advertisement. PayPal processes millions of transactions every year making it a powerhouse for personal and financial records. They also in the same way share this information with banks and even governments. All these companies have a big business advantage because they have loads of users and the desired information collected from customers, which makes them sought-after by other companies. Not all data collection is necessarily negative. Personalized advertisement can be very handy as it enables advertisers to reach users based on their interests.


Mental Health and Social Isolation

While social media connects people it also isolates them. Especially among heavy users of social media anxiety and depression are common negative mental health outcomes. To mention a few of the indications of social media addiction, there is anxiousness if unable to check social media, higher resilience on social media as a coping technique, and a negative impact on one personal life.

Addiction, stress, low self-esteem, and social anxiety are all factors that contribute to social media addiction. These characteristics keep a person to continue using social media excessively to relieve bad feelings. Overuse of social media sites can lead to a variety of health and personal relationship issues which are also seen in other addictions.

Worry or desperation, increased isolation, decreased physical activity, low self-esteem, and poor work or school performance are all side consequences of social media addiction.

In conclusion, social media has had a profound impact on the way people communicate, enabling enhanced connectivity, personal expression, and societal change. However, it also poses challenges, including the spread of misinformation, privacy concerns, and potential negative effects on mental health. Understanding the complicated dynamics of social media’s impact on communication is critical for properly navigating the digital era.












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