Media Anxieties: The Battle Against Social Media

Social media is an emerging sub genre of the internet that is slowly but surely changing the way we communicate. The first thing we do in the morning is not talk to our loved ones, but rather check our snap chat to see what we missed while we were sleeping! In many ways, social media and media in general is unavoidable! Everywhere you look there is advertising, visual stimulation and things to look at digitally to make sure that our brains are never left alone.

Jason Falls of SME (1) tweeted his followers to describe social media in 2 words or less. He got the expected replies, like “”humans connecting” or “community”, but he also found that defeatism and gloom-ridden riddled through. This anxiety over social media is developed over our wholes lives, as it gets embedded deeper and deeper into our minds.

From a young age I was taught to be wary of the internet and its contents. Despite the warnings from our parents and teachers, snap chat and instagram to our hearts content; do we realize how much power it has over us? A quick look into the snapchat terms (2) and conditions shows us that from the moment we press send, that photo is out there forever. That photo is not legally yours anymore and therefore you have no power over it. The internet and media are beautiful things, but they are powerful.
_86472254_instagram221331.jpgLast year Australian model and internet star Essena Oneill quit her online job and aimed to expose social media for what she thought it was (3). Her instagram had thousands of followers, and her youtube channels brought in thousands of views. Her point in all this was to make one thing extremely clear; what you see is not the entire story. She talked often about how
social media changed how she viewed herself, and changed her goals and values to things like the number of followers or views she had, and how no one ever knew because she kept up a portrayal of her perfect online life. To an extent, nothing we do online is honest! People aren’t seeing the real you, but the highlight reel you.

All in all we all have anxieties about media because truthfully none of us really understands it. it affects our lives and infiltrates our minds, and that’s something to be anxious about.

-Soph

References:

  1. Falls, Jason. (2008) Social Media in Two Words or Less [online] Available at: https://www.socialmediaexplorer.com/social-media-marketing/social-media-in-two-words-or-less/ [accessed 18/3/2016]
  2. Snapchat Terms and Conditions [online] Available at: https://www.snapchat.com/terms [accessed 18/3/2016]
  3. Murray. Rheanna. (4/11/2015) Instagram Star Quits Social Media, Reveals her Dream Life was All a Sham [online] Available at: http://www.today.com/news/instagram-star-quits-social-media-reveals-her-dream-life-was-t53721 [accessed 18/3/2016]
  4. Picture Credit: http://ichef-1.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/B0AB/production/_86472254_instagram221331.jpg
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