It is no secret that social media is one of the most interesting tools in today’s day and age; and when something interesting comes to the forefront kids are always tuned in and are trying to be a part of. Therefore, it is safe to assume that kids today have been attracted by social media and are looking to be active in it.
With over 500 million members active just on Facebook, there is no doubt that social media is here to stay. That said there is also no doubt that kids are an important part of the growth curve. Some of the popular sites that teens have access to are Facebook and Twitter.
These and other social media, such as these, that provide a whole bunch of information and bring a great deal of exposure. However, social media despite the advantages it provides also has some downsides to it. Parents, teachers and pediatricians alike, all over the world, have been trying to assess the kind of impact social media is having on children.
Many studies have been conducted and some of the effects of social media, and some of the most disturbing findings are as follows:
Cyber Bullies: This is a term that has come into existence since the advent of social media. It is a term that represents people that are bullied online. This could include hostility messages, posting controversial pictures or videos, and so on. You should be aware of the recent ALF nude scandal on Facebook.
Facebook Depression: Since Facebook has become one of the most popular social media option, children that feel isolated tend to feel more isolation because of their isolation online too. This depression can also be related to other forms of social media. If you evaluate your kids, you will understand how important it is for them today to have a good image on Facebook. Their photos, status messages, activities portray their overall image.
Lack of Filter: For a major part, these social media website provide access to a ample of information, and more often not, they do not have fully functional adult filters. This means that large sum of inappropriate content is easily accessible to kids. Thereby, providing a lot of unwanted exposure.
Distraction: Most children are under a lot of pressure growing up, with studies extra-curricular activities. This means that there is already a lot of demand on their time. However, social media can take away ample of that precious time and get children distracted with all the things that social media has to order.
Now, these are some of the downsides of the social media bug that has conquered the world, especially that of the young adults. So, how does it really work, how can these things actually be avoided? Well, there really is no one answer to completely immunise children from this. However, there can be a lot of steps that can be taken to reduce the impact of the ill-effects of it.
Some of the things that you can do to help insulate the negative impact of social media:
· Interact only with people that you are sure you know.
· Accept only friends requests
· Do not put up private information online
· Be considerate of other’s privacy
· Note the amount of time you spend on social media
· Ensure that you do not accept requests from random people and random links
· If you see something scandalous, try to be sensitive and don’t pass it on
· Finally, self monitoring is the best form of monitoring so ensure that you keep a tab on how and what you use social media for.