Are we really more connected? How social media is making us less social

Prepared by: Jennifer Short, Jennifer Drapeau & Andrea Olabiyi

Problem

The use of social media is among the most common activity of today’s children, adolescents and adults. Such applications offer a portal for endless communication and entertainment. How many of us are guilty of paying more attention to our phone than to the person in front of us? How many feel disconnected and insecure without our phones? Technology and social media allow us to be connected to work, world events, family and friends in the bitsphere 24/7. Social media applications bombard our devices with notifications, headlines and trending topics, but are we really more connected? Is social media making us less social?

Explore Effects

  • What are the effects of social media on self-esteem?
  • Why do we portray our lives as better than what it is on social media?
  • What are we missing by avoiding face-to-face interaction?
  • Is social media addictive and why?
  • What are global interactions and how have they changed over the years?
  • Do we lose our true identity through social media?
  • Do we really feel more connected on social media?
  • What potential affects will social media have on the next generation?
  • Behaviourism and connectivism are possible learning theories to be explored

Possible Solution

We need to spend more face to face time with our friends and loved ones. We need check in with social media less and check in with the lives of our friends and family more. We need to teach our kids what is was like to not live life in front of a screen. Use social media as a tool, not as a lifeline. We need to less time looking down at our phones and more time enjoying real life, watching sunsets and, as Neil DeGrasse Tyson says “keep looking up” in wonder at the world we live in.

We will create an informational video aimed at adolescents and young adults that will convey the drawbacks of too much dependence on social media. This age group is largely focused on the benefits that social media can provide while they remain largely unaware of the negative implications. The objective would be to provide individuals with a different perspective to the arm viewers with relevant information on the negative impacts of social media and how over use can affect their mental and physical health and well-being, their lives, their friends and family.

"This media we call social is anything but, when we open our computers and it's our doors we shut." (Gary Turk, 2014, 4:58)

ASSIGNMENT 1

For our group assignment we chose to focus on how social media is making us less social. In this world of twenty four hours a day, seven days a week connection to the bitsphere of posts, comments, tweets, likes, reactions, snapchats, notifications, headlines, trending topics and selfies, are we really more connected than ever before? In our video Prezi we explore such topics as the effects of social media on self-esteem, if social media is addictive, if we lose our true identity through social media as well as what we are missing by avoiding face-to-face interaction with family and friends.

"Life is like Facebook. People will like your problems and comment, but no one will solve them because everyone is busy updating theirs." (Diary of Lifes Little Secrets)

References

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Tolly, K. (October 21, 2014). Does Social Media Affect Student Self-Esteem?. Referenced from http://college.usatoday.com/2014/10/21/does-social-media-affect-students-self-esteem/

PETER, J., VALKENBURG, P., & SCHOUTEN, A. (2006). Friend Networking Sites and Their Relationship to Adolescents Well Being and Social Self Esteem. CYBER P SYCHOLOGY & B EHAVIOR, 9, . Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Patti_Valkenburg/publication/6761621_Friend_Networking_Sites_and_Their_Relationship_to_Adolescents%27_Well-Being_and_Social_Self-Esteem/links/5422d8660cf26120b7a63756/Friend-Networking-Sites-and-Their-Relationship-to-Adolescents-Well-Being-and-Social-Self-Esteem.pdf

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Andrews, F. M., & Withey, S. B. (2012). Social indicators of well-being: Americans' perceptions of life quality. Springer Science & Business Media.

Americans satisfied with number of friends, closeness of friendships. (2004, March 5). Retrieved February 16, 2017, from Gallup, http://www.gallup.com/poll/10891/americans-satisfied-number-friends-closeness-friendships.aspx

Bryner, J. (2011, November 04). Close Friends Less Common Today, Study Finds. Retrieved February 16, 2017, from Live Science, http://www.livescience.com/16879-close-friends-decrease-today.html

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STERN, J. (2013, May 29). Cellphone users check phones 150x/day. Retrieved February 17, 2017, from ABC News, http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/technology/2013/05/cellphone-users-check-phones-150xday-and-other-internet-fun-facts/

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TEDx Talks (2014, November 10). How social media makes us unsocial | Allison Graham | TEDxSMU Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5GecYjy9-Q

Chowdhry, A. (2016, April 30). Research links heavy Facebook and social media usage to depression. Forbes. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/amitchowdhry/2016/04/30/study-links-heavy-facebook-and-social-media-usage-to-depression/#6ba9168c7e4b

TEDx Talks (2016, January 25). What you are missing while being a digital zombie | Patrik Wincent | TEDxStockholm Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAIxb42FjwE

Chowdhry, A. (2016, April 30). Research links heavy Facebook and social media usage to depression. Forbes. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/amitchowdhry/2016/04/30/study-links-heavy-facebook-and-social-media-usage-to-depression/#6ba9168c7e4b

Lowery, T. (2013, August 28). Why Social Media Is So Addictive (And Why Marketers Should Care). Retrieved February 17, 2017, from http://www.cmswire.com/cms/customer-experience/why-social-media-is-so-addictive-and-why-marketers-should-care-022276.php

The Self in Selfie: Identity in the Age of Social Media. (n.d.). Retrieved February 17, 2017, from https://www.ctd.northwestern.edu/blog/self-selfie-identity-age-social-media

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Credits:

Created with images by jseliger2 - "cell phone zombies-1215" • KristopherK - "male night the darkness" • LoboStudioHamburg - "twitter facebook together"

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