Social Media is dangerous! A lot of teenage suicides, cases of depression, hacking, stalking, reputation damages, cyber bullying, etc., are associated with social media.
Teenagers are all over social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. 54% of teenagers using Facebook experience cyber bullying. 28% of those using Twitter experiences cyber bullying. 24% of those on Instagram experience cyber bullying. 1 in 4 kids who are cyber bullied think of committing suicide.
A New York post claimed that 160,000 Facebook accounts were compromised due to hacking in 2016. 40% of security breaches targeted businesses that included names like Dun & Bradstreet (52GB data stolen), Reliance Jio (120 million customer data hacked) and HBO (1.5 Terabytes data hacked).
Social Media is also extremely resource consuming! We put a lot of efforts and wasted a lot of time on social media . Statistics say that 28% of all the time spent on media is consumed by social media today. Over 500 million Tweets are sent every day by Twitter users. On Instagram, 5 million pictures are uploaded every single day.
A thing that is dangerous and extremely resource consuming – Should it be banned?
Can you think of objects that you use in your daily life that are either dangerous, resource consuming or both? Do you stop using them?
Let us take a very small example of a Knife. Is it dangerous? Yes, it can be for kids. So, do we ban it? No, because it is very useful. So, how do we ensure that knife is used, but at the same time, we keep us safe? The first thing we do is keep the thing away from those who are most vulnerable – Kids. So, we keep the knife in such a place in our house where kids cannot reach. Does it completely eliminate the danger? Probably not, but it does give you some level of safely.
Is social media dangerous but useful as well? If we apply the knife analogy to social media, should we stop using it? Or do we have an alternative? We may probably keep it away from kids and allow them to use it only when they are wise enough to understand the virtual world.
Now, let us take another example of a thing which is both resource consuming and dangerous, but at the same useful – A gas cylinder – dangerous if it leaks and resource consuming as it takes efforts to maintain and keep safe. We need to purchase it every month, pay bills, ensure that it is away from fire, keep track of usage, exchange it every time it is finished, etc. So, what do we do if we want to be safer or reduce our efforts? We think of an alternative – A gas pipeline – It is safer and does not need maintenance.
Applying the same analogy to social media, can we find alternatives?
Instead of using dating sites like Tinder to connect, can we use professional networking sites like Facebook?
Instead of using Facebook for personal chats, can we use LinkedIn for professional chats?
Instead of using social networking to chat options made for adults, can we make our kids use safer chat rooms like PLayKids Talk, Disney Mix, and Kid Mix?
We need social media. It helps us connect. It helps us reach out to our friends. It helps companies reach out to their consumers. It helps us communicate and remain updated.
Instead of banning social media, we should find appropriate solutions to problems. We always have ways to keep ourselves safe from the dangers of social media – we can keep it away from kids and give them alternatives that are safer. Same applies to even adults; we can use more of professional networking sites than dating sites to keep our conscience clean. It all depends on our attitude and approach in utilizing social media. Anyhow we should make use of the good benefits of social media in the coming days for a better future for all us, especially the younger generation at large.