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Are Social Networks a Good Thing? Essay

When I think of social networks, I personally feel that they are a waste of time and there really is very little need for them; I can concede that they are helpful and give a lot of freedom and communication to virtually anybody but I feel that the more and more they evolve, the more engrossed in them people soon become. Social networks are a huge part of an era of the future and take away some of the best aspects to communicating and meeting people. To speak to people and see them in a physical form is by far the greatest way to truly know someone and communicate – Yet now with social networking becoming so popular and common, there is a rapid decrease in the amount of people who choose to communicate in a more traditional and exclusive way – which leads me to believe that social networks are not really worth the time they are so heavily privileged.

Social networking can be seen in a variety of ways and a lot of opinions will be rife in praise. Social networks cause lots of grief, humiliation and (in extreme circumstances) even death. The number of teens that fall victim to the likes of cyber-bullying is astonishing and shocking. One in three teenagers *1 have been victims of cyber-bullying and the number will continue to rise. Sites like ask.fm and Facebook contribute heavily to why young people are becoming victims of verbal abuse or bullying due to the social networking they so often adore.

The ease of access and use of sites like ask.fm and Facebook are a main source of the problem – children under the age of thirteen are becoming more and more engrossed in sites like Facebook and twitter all the time. – that eventually begins to fuel teenage suicides *2 and depression. These problems are caused by the function for people of all ages to say what they want behind a computer screen without any direct consequence on them. Sites like ask.fm are designed for people to communicate and share their thoughts and ideas without having to reveal their true identity and to prevent being judged but give people the opportunity to say horrible and hateful things to people without having to face any consequence. It is due to these sites that the rates and statistics of suicides, depressions and vulgar abuse are increasing and can be so easily stopped.

Although many will neglect, the increase in social networks and time spent on them are slowly and efficiently leading to poorer grades in schools across the country. *3 Due to this, children are worryingly, becoming less likely to leave school with top grades and struggle to gain entry to university degrees and college courses, which can often leave them disappointed with themselves and their futures. A lack of concentration and a poorer developing of essential vocabulary is becoming more and more common and directly results to them finding difficulty in what is already difficult exams. With the removal or clamping down of social media access, teens would become more focused on what is truly important and can totally shape their future with the right amount of hard work and dedication.

On the other hand, social networking is not all bad and is a good form of free communication that can be used well, in moderation. Sites like Facebook and Twitter can allow the quick and efficient communication between many people but can also be a gateway to meeting people from all over the world. As appealing as it sounds it can often be abused by a minute minority but is generally used well and can be of great value to many. The interaction with others online can be of great help to some people and can help them become more confident around new people, their self confidence can be improved as well with the approval of peers online, thus resulting in a more confident and enjoyable approach in all walks of life.

Due to social networking, young people can greatly benefit from the ever-growing evolution that is modern day technology and greatly improve in the practical aspects of using computers and other types of technology that are so commonly used and operated in the modern day of work. There can also be an increase to essential literacy skills – that are required to progress in school – through digital media and other forms of media through the social media platforms so accessible and varied throughout the world of online social media.

Social media can be a goldmine of support to some people that feel especially sequestered and have very unique and diverse interests. Through the use of a platform that is so widely accessed and can link to all corners of the world, it helps the most unique of people to find common ground and interests they can not only share themselves but with many others while making friends and learning about all new cultures and places in the meantime. It can allow the ideas and opinions of many different types of personalities to come together and have a say about topics and ideas that may only apply to a very distinct group of people.

In many ways social networking cannot replace the topical news published in good, broadsheet newspapers and respectable websites like the guardian, but can be a good source of information and allow connections to people with similar interests to be made. Which can cause an exchange of information and different peoples understanding of a topic to help and drive the learning of the user greatly. Social media is also an incredible form of communication with the world, for some people who want their opinions and views to be heard, they can use the likes of Twitter and Facebook to attempt to reach out towards the rest of the world. This can be very important and helpful to some people and can directly contribute to a greater feeling of satisfaction and pride when they are able to voice their opinions to the world.

Social networking has many positive aspects and can truly help people stay in contact, it provides a link to the world and there is a real desire for it, with the growing introduction of social networking in the education system it could potentially revolutionise and shape the modern way of life completely and is becoming a true leading breakthrough in the technological world.

To conclude, I believe that social networking has its flaws – extreme as they may be – but should not be taken away completely. It should be improved and tweaked vigorously, to prevent people from being forced into a position where they seek the option of taking their own life as a result of the abuse and bullying they have to live with. Social networking is a topic where there is no right or wrong answer and there is plenty of evidence to go toward it or against it but I think there is more good done from it than it is given praise for and I believe it to be an incredibly useful platform if used correctly.

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