Class Assignment #2

Facebook Social or Anti-Social?

For me social media is all about relationships, and for that there is huge potential. Whether you simply tweet your existing friends and family, or whether you spend your time on social networks connecting professionally with bloggers and journalists, ultimately it all boils down to how deep those connections go.

The film director Sofia Coppola says it’s gone too far and we’re at risk of breeding a generation of brats who imagine they are movie stars. After the premiere of her latest picture, The Bling Ring, Coppola said that she conducted research by hanging out with teenagers in Los Angeles. Her conclusion was that young people live in a “scary” world of constant self-surveillance. “Everyone was texting, taking pictures, and I tried to put as much of that in the film as possible. It was almost sci-fi, this idea that living does not count unless you are documenting it.” In other words, the “Me Me Me Generation” is ready for its close-up.

It’s interesting to note that teens don’t Tweet nearly so much as they use Facebook and text. Adolescent Tweeters are twice as likely to be female as male, which confirms the suspicion that most Tweeting teens are simply online followers of Justin Bieber (he has 37.9 million). Studies of American teens show that 93 per cent of them enjoy access to the internet and roughly two-thirds go online once a day. Over 70 per cent are on a social network and 41 per cent of Facebook users say that they check their account obsessively. What are they looking at? Over 80 per cent are leaving comments on photos or updating their banal statuses (they’re not debating macroeconomics or planning a bank heist, they’re “liking” photos of cats). In all, the evidence suggests that teens are big users of the internet but not really into “content creation” – they don’t have a large amount of original things to say or share. That’s not surprising: they haven’t even started living yet.

Modern social media allows the sharing of events – and, arguably, that has enhanced them. Rather than just experiencing the Eiffel Tour – led by the nose by a guide – Twitter encourages us to think about how we feel about it and then formulate a pithy comment. Then, thanks to the internet, thousands of people across the world can share that experience and add their own perspective. Rather than turning teens into zombies, it’s possible that it’s expanding their opportunity and ability to analyses situations critically – to own an experience and, perhaps, actually experience it more deeply than they might otherwise have done. Facebook lets them curate photos of the trip; text lets them articulate how exciting it is.

Facebook or any other social media is totally making us anti-social which is not a good sign at all. If we meet new people we asked them if they are on Facebook or not so that we can talk later as-well this is the biggest sign that Facebook is making us anti-social.



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