One thing we know growing up was that man is a social being who can only survive, develop and achieve ultimate fulfilment by living in society and co-operating with other human beings. Yeah, this was reiterated during the brush-up class on the Nature of Human beings. The social dimensions of man are founded on nature. Man needs society to live life comfortably and safely. Against natural and other dangers, he needs protection only from society.
Developing close interpersonal relationships is in itself an important aspect of the fulfilment of human beings. Besides, other aspects of human fulfilment such as the acquisition of knowledge and skills can be developed only to an extremely limited extent by one person alone; they can only be fully developed following their potential in large communities. Beyond this, we need other people, not only because of what we receive from them but also because we have to give and share to attain our fulfilment. There can be no personal growth independent of the needs of the people around us. These are some of the things I learnt from the course.
The concern of this write up is how the social nature of humans has been affected by the social media era.
Undeniably, there are some elements of socialization in the use of social media, just like Barnes, Understanding social media from the media ecological perspective said, Social media are applications that enable people to interact with each other and build social networks that increase social capital, but, the human nature of social community is gradually deteriorating and issues are forming from the increase in the use of social media. In as much as the use of social media has advantages, it also has negative personal impacts; enabling young people to over-analyze and criticize themselves as well as their problems.
There has been an increase in the number of depression cases since the era of social media. Seeking acceptance and staying connected with peers is an important element of social life. However, the intensity of the online world, which requires constant engagement, creates a factor of self-awareness that may trigger depression in some people.
According to Jacobs’, Tom; The Link Between Depression and Terrorism; Primarily because social media promotes putting up a façade that highlights all the fun, excitement and success we seem to enjoy but tells very little about where we are struggling in our day to day life on a deeper level and leads to an experience of false intimacy.
So to fit in, in our profiles we try to portray perfectly happy and trendy facades because that’s what we see others doing. As a result, our profiles reflect how we want to be perceived, rather than showing an honest picture of who we truly are.
Also, there is the issue of catfishing, when people tend to focus so much time on social media networks that real-life relationships suffer, this will cost our more important relationships with our loved ones and close family members because more of our time and effort is put into the illusion of social media. The term Catfish describes people who create fake social networking profiles, and “catfishing” is the process of befriending strangers online while using a fake or stolen identity. It is a deceptive act and it has ruined marriages, relationships and the emotional wellbeing of many people. These and more are the issues human beings face as a result of a shift to the media world.
Finally, in as much as we adore the advancement of technology in our society( Social media is not evil), let’s not forget the essence and the importance of the place of the social community we all grow up with.