April: Day Five | What do you think of social media?

YoursTruly

Hey there! I hope you’re having a fantastic start to the month!

For Day Five the question is:

What do you think of social media?

I think social media can be one of the greatest inventions . . . when it is used properly. That’s the key word. When I was in high school we didn’t have social media. We weren’t able to connect with our favorite actors, musicians, athletes, etc. online the way we can now. YouTube wasn’t around until about three years after I graduated high school, so if you wanted to hear an interview with your favorite band (cough cough *NSYNC) you had to sit next to the radio with a CASSETTE TAPE on deck and wait to hit the record button at just the right moment. There were no DVR’s and no YouTube, so if you wanted to re-watch that amazing performance from an awards show, you had to pop a VHS TAPE in your VCR and, also, hit record button at just the right moment. The struggle was real!

I wouldn’t even have this blog if it weren’t for the internet and social media! So I do think there are a lot of positives that come along with it. It’s pretty cool to be able to reach out to our favorite actors, writers, musicians, athletes and influencers and, in some cases, even have a conversation with them. If I were able to have a conversation with Justin Timberlake in my high school years,  maybe my life would’ve taken a different path. Okay, that might be a slight exaggeration lol, but it’s still pretty cool to have that possibility now. I’ve also made a ton of friends via social media that live in other states that I never would have met if I wasn’t on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

Imagine the horror of living in a time where smart phones didn’t exist! We actually had to TALK to our family and friends as opposed to texting or tweeting. I feel old saying it because even though I love the possibilities available to us via social media, I miss the times where we knew how to communicate.

Which brings me to my thoughts of how social media can be a negative thing also. I’ve been a fan of The Vampire Diaries for years now and I recapped it online with my friends for a while. As a writer, I follow a lot of the writers and creators of the show because I admire the work they do. However, I’ve seen these incredible writers get the rudest tweets and messages because the scripts didn’t include “ships” that some fans were longing for. Are you kidding me??? How can a group of writers please every single fan out there? It’s literally impossible. I’m sure the writers of these shows have thick skin to be able to do what they do, but I’m sure getting these messages from strangers claiming to be fans can also be disconcerting at times.

There is also cyber-bullying to worry about. My niece is 12 and has social media, so the worry is constantly there for me. Thankfully she doesn’t mind me being logged into her accounts so I can help guide her through the correct ways to use social media. It’s sad that terms like “fat-shaming” and “slut-shaming” exist these days. Someone doesn’t fit societies expectations for the perfect body? They’re labeled fat and unhealthy. A woman has a photo leaked of her that was sent to her boyfriend at the time? She’s a slut. A man would get props on that one though if the roles were reversed. I’ve even seen fans on Twitter send despicable comments to actors just to get a response from them. Forget the fact that the actor will respond by calling them a jerk, the fan is still excited (which baffles my mind lol).

There are a number of ways to look at social media and the effects it has on society today. When used properly, it can be fun and productive. When used improperly, it can cause pain to others.

So think about how you want to impact those around you and set the example! Let’s teach younger generations to appreciate the things they have at their fingertips and to utilize those outlets correctly.

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