Anthony J. Bradley defines social media as “a set of technologies and channels targeted at forming and enabling a potentially massive community of participants to productively collaborate.”In other words, a way for people to effectively communicate without having face-to-face interactions. But how has social media affected the way people communicate when they in fact are face-to-face?
With today’s technological advances, individuals are so encompassed in their social media, that it’s intended purpose is almost counterproductive. Social media was designed for individuals to become social through technology, but when the time comes to have a social, face-to-face meeting the focus of most people’s attention is still in their phones.
Teenagers definition of “hanging out” is sitting in a room on their phones. If my mom needs to borrow something from the neighbor, she texts her first instead of walking over and knocking on the door. If I go over to spend time with my nephew, he sits on the couch on his iPad all night.
In these contexts, social media has done the polar opposite of it’s intended purpose. Instead of enhancing out communication skills, it’s teaching people to communicate less in face-to-face interactions.
We are in control of how we use this amazing advancement. When used the right way, social media can be so beneficial and have such a positive impact on our everyday lives. The intended purpose of social media is effective and positive, and we as individuals need to realize its true purpose and utilize all the tools given to us through these advancements.