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How the Internet Has Changed Everyday Life

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 4 (884 words)
Categories: Addiction To Social Networking Sites, Facebook, Social Media Addiction, Technology Addiction
Downloads: 31
Views: 15

In this day and age, social networking has become a large part of everyday life, and this may not be such a good thing. So many people are online so much that it has started to become all they do. When the Internet becomes a major part of daily life, getting too sucked in can be dangerous. Not only is the Internet infested with cyberbullies and shady websites, but it can also be addictive and the root of some cases of depression.

Social networking is detrimental to society because it can seriously damage a healthy lifestyle, both mentally and physically.
There are some benefits to the use of social networks. Users can stay connected with friends and family, complete school projects online and help serve the community. The more “friends” someone has online, the more popular that makes them feel. With newer social media sites such as Instagram and Snapchat, creativity is the main component in the way users communicate.

While the benefits to social networking seem like a good reason to stay heavily involved online, there is a darker, and more serious side that many overlook. Social networking has been proven to spawn depression and other serious side-effects. A study conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health states that one in five adults have depression and eleven percent of kids will suffer from it, social networking being one of the sources of mental instability. Not only can social network usage give rise to depression, but also show inappropriate content, and shorten attention spans, while cyberbullies and advertisements target children and teens.

Social networks are also prone to be addictive. In the last five years, the use of social media sites by teenagers has gone up significantly. Twenty-five percent of teens with cell phones use them mainly for social networking and twenty-two percent visit a social media site more than once a day (O\’Keeffe). Since people use social networks so often, they are becoming more and more vulnerable to Internet addiction, and it has become a legitimate problem. The first treatment center for social network addiction opened in Washington state in 2009. According to Michael Bugeja, director of the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication at Iowa State University, “Educators are shortchanging kids by not warning them about the potential dangers, including Facebook Addiction.” (‘Flocking’ Behavior) Knowledge is power, and without the knowledge that Internet addiction is a real and dangerous problem, it is harder to avoid.

Nowadays, people spend so much time online, they can begin to exhibit signs of severe depression. Depression derived from social networks has been given the accusatory name “Facebook depression”, but it is not just limited to Facebook. According to Dr. Larry Rosen, Professor of Psychology at California State University, “[. . .] there is no doubt that our interactions with technology are making us appear as though we are depressed or manic or both.” (Rosen 76) Not only does “Facebook depression” affect moods and energy level, but can also lead to suicide or suicidal thoughts. People with this illness are subject to social isolation, short attention spans, and manic tendencies. However, “Facebook depression” is not the only disorder with these symptoms. Manic-depressive illness (also known as Bipolar disorder), is quite similar to depression derived from social networking. Bipolar disorder is a severe illness that can drastically affect mood, energy levels, and causes depressive behavior followed by extreme manic behavior. The more time people spend online, the higher the risk of suffering from one of these serious disorders.

Not only are children and teens exposed to addiction and Facebook depression, but they are also exposed to risky sites and content, and even people. Social networking and texting have become a more popular place for online bullies to do their dirty work. Studies show that between 33 percent and 42 percent of kids online have been subjected to cyberbullying. According to Dr. Gwenn Schurgin O\’Keeffe, a pediatrician and spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics, cyberbullying can happen to anyone and can cause major problems such as depression, anxiety, social isolation, and sometimes suicide. Not only is the risk of cyberbullying prominent online, but also exposure to inappropriate content, lack of understanding and outside influence. Being aware of shady websites and online bullies will reduce these risks.
Lastly, virtual advertisements target users based on information data mined from their accounts. Not only is privacy violated, but also abused. Social media sites steal personal information and give it to advertisement agencies. The agencies will then try to sell their products to the person most likely buy it, according to the stolen information. Social networks have no consideration for feelings, their goal is to make money. Advertisements profit from the gullibility of users, and users themselves are being tricked into buying more, while, at the same time, are being stolen from. On the Internet, nothing is private.

From Internet addiction to manipulative advertisements, social networks have made such a big impact on everyday life. Then detrimental influence is much more serious than many people want to believe. There are just too many risks to the physical and mental health of society. Being on a social network will test the discretion of each and every user, and it is up to them to decide whether or not it’s worth the risk.

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How the Internet Has Changed Everyday Life. (2020, Sep 11). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/how-the-internet-has-changed-everyday-life-essay

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