A Letter on the Fallacies of Facebook

Topics: Facebook

Dear, I am sure you are aware of the growing popularity of social media in today’s society. Even I tend to get somewhat caught up in all of the different social sharing apps like Facebook and Instagram. However, social media is said to be a negative intluence on society because it causes people to be depressed. It may seem hard to believe which is why I have compiled some research that I felt would be most beneficial to you. First, I would like to point out that social media sites have many benefits.

They enable us to communicate with friends efficiently, build relationships, and share positive things with our associates. The overuse of this tool is what worries me. Americans who use these social networking sites tend to spend more than three hours per day checking and re-checking their profiles, notifications, and messages. According to one study, a portion of those users claim to spend over 6 hours a day doing so (Social Networking Eats Up 3+ Hours Per Day For The Average American User).

Spending that much time in the virtual world prevents people from accomplishing important things in the real world.

If that time was used for learning, working, or serving others it would be easier for people to have more positive feelings about themselves. As you are aware, many sites have a way of gauging the popularity of things the user posts. On Facebook, users can see the number of people who “like” what they have posted. This can be a great marketing tool for businesses.

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It allows them to see who they are getting their advertisements to and how they can improve their marketing strategies.

However, for the general user these “likes,” or lack of them, may be a major contributor to “Facebook Depression” which is “defined as depression that develops when preteens and teens spend a great deal of time on social media sites, such as Facebook, and then begin to exhibit classic symptoms of depression (O’Keeffe 800-804).” When users post something that receives very little positive feedback they assume that people don’t appreciate what they post and therefore don’t appreciate them. This is especially true when individuals start comparing themselves with their friends. When someone sees their friends getting more “likes” than them on Facebook they think that they are less cool than them. “Likes” aren’t the only thing that matter though. How many friends you have is a big deal too.

Social networker Mohammed Gol says, “If someone has more friends than you do, then you think that he’s more popular or that people like him more. You may have less than 20 friends, while someone else has over 700. It can cause depression even though what seems real actually is not (Smith).” Another study conducted by Humboldt University and Technical University found that seeing pictures of vacations and hearing about other people’s love and work successes makes people jealous, miserable, and lonely (DesMarais). Social media provides an online realm for comparison and envy which is leading people to have less friends while causing them to think they have more. Now, not everyone who uses Facelbook is depressed. Just as I stated in the beginning of my letter, I use Facebook myself. It can be an efficient way to communicate witha lot of people. In fact, without Facebook, there are some people that I would no longer be in contact with. Something that is disconcerting to me though, is when relationships in the real world take a backseat to cyber ones.

For instance, one evening some friends of mine celebrated a girl’s birthday. During the party, some of the young women were so concerned about documenting the OCcasion on Instagram that they neglected those friends who were there in person. Throughout the night they checked and re-checked the photo, counting the number of likes every two to three minutes. Friendships that could have been strengthened were weakened instead. Belinda Goldsmith, quoting a researcher from Berlin’s Humboldt University said, “We were surprised by how many people have a negative experience from Facebook with envy leaving them feeling lonely, frustrated or angry.” Social media is becoming a negative influence in society because it causes depression. Some action must be taken to combat this new found problem. However, I am not entirely sure what the solution to this subtle setback in society should be. I hope that you will openly share with me any thoughts you have had. Together, I know we can obtain a solution.

Works Cited

  1. DesMarais, Christina. 5 Reasons To Stop Checking Facebook at Work, Huffington Post, 19 Feb. 2013.
  2. Goldsmith, Belinda. Facebook Study Says Envy Is Rampant On The Social Network, Huffington Post. Web. 22 Jan. 2013.
  3. Harvard University, Feb 2005. Web. 28 Oct. 2013. <http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/Dysthymia.htm>
  4. OKeeffe, Gwenn Schurgin, and Kathleen Clarke-Pearson. “Clinical Report–The Impact Of Social Media On Children, Adolescents, And Families.” Pediatrics 127.4 (2011): 800-804.Academic Search Premier. Web. 10 Oct. 2013.
  5. Smith, Aaron. “Social Networks and Depression.” Chicago Tribune. Web. 2013.
  6. Social Networking Eats Up 3+ Hours Per Day For The Average American User, Watershed Publishing. Web. 9 January 2013.

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A Letter on the Fallacies of Facebook. (2023, Feb 26). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/a-letter-on-the-fallacies-of-facebook/

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