Pros and Cons of Social Media (2023)

Multitasking has become a common theme in our lives. It’s a wonder how we manage it all.

We depend on our smartphones for work, school, our personal and social lives. When was the last time you left home without your phone and kept on going? The internet has become a significant part of our daily lives. So too has social media. And it is having an impact on today’s teens.

(Video) Social Media | Pros and Cons

Social media usage

Back in 2005, when social media was still in its infancy, only about 5 percent of users in the United States were involved in social media. In 2019, that number grew to about 70 percent.

  • Pew Research Center surveyed social media usage and popularity among US adults early in 2019. The survey found that while the most-used social platforms for adults are YouTube and Facebook; teens prefer SnapChat and Instagram, while TikTok is reportedly the fastest growing social network among younger users.
  • Social media use is nearly universal among today’s teens. Pew Research Center reports 97 percent of 13- to 17-year-olds use at least one of seven major online platforms.
  • The amount of time spent on social sites is astounding. One reportindicatesthe average teen ages 13 to 18 spends about nine hours on social media each day; tweens ages 8 to 12 are on for about six hours a day.

Like most things, using social media has its positives (the good), its cautionary tales (the bad), and dangers (the ugly) that lurk and impact the lives of many, but especially teens.

Pros: Why is social media good?

Social media and technology offer us greater convenience and connectivity:

(Video) Social Media Pros And Cons

  • staying connected with family and friends worldwide via email, text, FaceTime, etc.
  • quick access to information and research
  • banking and bill pay at our fingertips
  • online learning, job skills, content discovery (YouTube)
  • involvement in civic engagement (fundraising, social awareness, provides a voice)
  • great marketing tools
  • opportunities for remote employment

Social media can be a good thing, but if teens ever feel uncomfortable about something they see or read on social, they should trust their own feelings and talk to someone – a parent, a teacher, or another trusted adult. Bullying, threats and cruelty on social media are all signs that the person doing those things needs help.

Cons: Why is social media bad?

Along with the good comes the bad. With all of its benefits, the nature of social media presents a range of potential issues.

  • Online vs Reality. Social media itself is not the problem. It is the way people use it in place of actual communication and in-person socializing. “Friends” on social media may not actually be friends, and may even be strangers.
  • Increased usage. The more time spent on social media can lead to cyberbullying, social anxiety, depression, and exposure to content that is not age appropriate.
  • Social Media is addicting. When you’re playing a game or accomplishing a task, you seek to do it as well as you can. Once you succeed, your brain will give you a dose of dopamine and other happiness hormones, making you happy. The same mechanism functions when you post a picture to Instagram or Facebook. Once you see all the notifications for likes and positive comments popping up on your screen, you’ll subconsciously register it as a reward. But that’s not all, social media is full of mood-modifying experiences.
  • Fear of Missing Out. FOMO has become a common theme, and often leads to continual checking of social media sites. The idea that you might miss out on something if you’re not online can affect your mental health.
  • Self-image issues. Social media sites provide tools that allow people to earn others’ approval for their appearance and the possibility to compare themselves to others. It can be associated with body image concerns. The “selfieholics” and people who spend most of their time posting and scrolling are the ones most vulnerable to this. In fact, most college girls who use Facebook at least five times a day are likely to link their self-worth to their looks. That doesn’t mean that the main problem is social media; it only provides a medium for it, which further elevates the problem. It also promotes the same sort of behavior to others.

Social media and bullying

Sadly, there is an ugly side to all that technology offers. While bullying is not a new concept, social media and technology have brought bullying to a new level. It becomes a more constant, ever-present threat -- cyberbullying. The State of Rhode Island anti-bullying laws & regulations define bullying and cyberbullying as follows:

(Video) 5 Crazy Ways Social Media Is Changing Your Brain Right Now

“Bullying” means the use by one or more students of a written, verbal or electronic expression or a physical act or gesture or any combination thereof directed at a student that:

  • causes physical or emotional harm to the student or damage to the student's property
  • places the student in reasonable fear of harm to himself/herself or of damage to his/her property
  • creates an intimidating, threatening, hostile, or abusive educational environment for the student
  • infringes on the rights of the student to participate in school activities
  • materially and substantially disrupts the education process or the orderly operation of a school

“Cyberbullying” means bullying through the use of technology or any electronic communication, which shall include, but not be limited to, any transfer of signs, signals, writing, images, sounds, data, texting or intelligence of any nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio, electromagnetic, photo electronic or photo optical system, including, but not limited to, electronic mail, Internet communications, instant messages or facsimile communications.

Bullying statistics

Every 7 minutes a child is bullied. Unfortunately, intervention is rare, with an adult intervening in only four percent of cases, and a peer in 11 percent. An astonishing 85 percent of all cases of bullying are not addressed.

(Video) The PROS and CONS of Social Media

The following are just some statistics on how common bullying and cyberbullying have become: According to StopBullying.org:

  • One out of four (25 percent) teens are bullied, while up to 43 percent have been bullied while online.
  • Nine out of tenLGBTQ students experienced harassment at school and online. Biracial and multiracial youth are more likely to be victimized than youth who identify with a single race. Kids who are obese, gay, or have disabilities are more likely to be bullied than other children.
  • 58 percent have not told their parents or an adult about something mean or hurtful that happened to them online.
  • 5.4 million children stay home on any given day because they fear being bullied.

Social media and suicide

Sadly, the cons of social media can take a toll on young minds. Suicide remains among the leading causes of death of children under age 14. In most cases, young people die from hanging.

  • Suicide rates among 10- to 14-year-olds have grown more than 50 percent over the last three decades, according to the American Association of Suicidology.
  • Suicide rates among children between the ages of 10 and 14 are very low, but are creeping up, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

What can parents do?

As parents, there are things we can do to improve our children’s lives online and in real life.

(Video) Is social media good for you? - BBC My World

  • Attempt to model the behavior we want to see.
  • Set boundaries right way when you give your child their first phone. Set parental controls on his or her phone, with access to their passwords. Phones should be charged somewhere other than their room at night, and should be shut off an hour or two before bed.
  • Have conversations with your children on why some things should be kept private.
  • Take time to actively engage with your kids face-to-face. This interaction teaches them how to follow social cues, verbal and non-verbal.
  • Talk to your kids without glancing at your phone.
  • Find opportunities to havegenuine conversations that are not lectures.
  • Be aware of privacy concerns and cybersecurity issues.

Technology has changed the way we live, work, and socialize. But it can’t replace parenting.

For more tips on parenting, visit the Growing section of our Lifespan Livinghealth and wellness blog.

FAQs

What are the pros and cons for social media? ›

Pros & Cons of Social Media
ProsCons
Put yourself out there in a good wayPosting inappropriate statuses/pictures
Connect with students in other educational systemsMaking people feel bad about themselves
Make new friends/communicate or connect with old friends/familyCyberbullying
15 more rows

What are 5 pros about social media? ›

Advantages of Social Media
  • Connectivity. Connectivity is among the most significant benefits of social media. ...
  • Education. The use of social media in education is commendable. ...
  • Information and Updates. ...
  • Awareness. ...
  • Share Anything With Others. ...
  • Helps in Building Communities. ...
  • Noble Cause. ...
  • Mental Health.
18 Oct 2022

What are 5 cons of social media? ›

10 Disadvantages of Social Networking
  • Lacks Emotional Connection. ...
  • Gives People a License to be Hurtful. ...
  • Decreases Face-to-Face Communication Skills. ...
  • Conveys Inauthentic Expression of Feelings. ...
  • Diminishes Understanding and Thoughtfulness. ...
  • Causes Face-to-Face Interactions to Feel Disconnected. ...
  • Facilitates Laziness.
6 Sept 2019

What are the pros and cons of media? ›

Comparison Table for Advantages and Disadvantages of Media
AdvantagesDisadvantages
Media allows cultural diffusion among people from different parts of the world.Creating fake profiles and sending threats or bullying or such acts can ruin the mental health and reputation of targetted individuals.
7 more rows
7 Jan 2022

What are pros and cons? ›

The pros and cons of something are its advantages and disadvantages, which you consider carefully so that you can make a sensible decision.

What are 3 cons of social media? ›

The more time spent on social media can lead to cyberbullying, social anxiety, depression, and exposure to content that is not age appropriate.

Is social media bad or good? ›

Since it's a relatively new technology, there's little research to establish the long-term consequences, good or bad, of social media use. However, multiple studies have found a strong link between heavy social media and an increased risk for depression, anxiety, loneliness, self-harm, and even suicidal thoughts.

What are 7 advantages of social media? ›

7 Benefits of Social Media You Can't Afford to Ignore [...
  • It's cost-effective.
  • It provides authenticity.
  • It compliments advertising.
  • It fosters your creative voice.
  • It provides a forum for customer care.
  • It builds engaged communities.
  • It helps search engine optimization.
12 Oct 2020

What are the cons of media? ›

Disadvantages of media
  • It contributes to individualism. ...
  • As a consequence, it is affected by social interactions with friends, relatives and neighbours.
  • Some content in the media is not appropriate for children.
  • It can be tough to restrict children's access to certain stuff.
  • Papers are geographically limited.

What are the 10 disadvantage of social media? ›

The disadvantages of social media usage include addiction, cyberbullying, the dissemination of fake news, and a direct impact on brand reputation.

What are the pros and cons of social media for students? ›

  • 6 Pros & Cons Of Social Media In The Classroom. contributed by Aimee Hosler.
  • Engaged students are more successful. ...
  • Social media teaches important life lessons. ...
  • It's 'real world' ...
  • The Internet is a new medium for bullying. ...
  • Social media can be a time suck.
  • The Internet is a dangerous place.

Is social media good for society? ›

The truth is that social media can also be beneficial for society. It can help individuals connect and deepen their relationships. Social media also encourages students to learn and grow. And it can empower businesses to build their audiences and boost their bottom line.

What are the pros of social media? ›

Social media allows people to improve their relationships and make new friends. Social media helps empower business women. Social media sites help employers find employees and job-seekers find work. Being a part of a social media site can increase a person's quality of life and reduce the risk of health problems.

What is pros and cons example? ›

Example Sentences

There are pros and cons to having children. I'm weighing the pros and cons of moving to another state. The pros and cons of using a laptop for work are debatable. The pros and cons of taking a day off work are clear. There are pros and cons to every decision we make in life.

How do you write pros and cons? ›

First, write the decision that you have to make at the top of a two-column grid. Label one side "Pros" and the other "Cons." Then, list all of the possible positive consequences of the decision in the pros column, and all the negative effects in the cons column.

What are pros examples? ›

Examples of Pros:

New car is safer. New car gets better gas mileage. New car has more cargo space.

What makes social media bad? ›

Although there are important benefits, social media can also provide platforms for bullying and exclusion, unrealistic expectations about body image and sources of popularity, normalization of risk-taking behaviors, and can be detrimental to mental health.

Is social media good or bad for society essay? ›

Social media is powerful source of information that can be used for good. It important for people to understand the benefits of the online world and make the most of it. Social networking sites allow people to communicate and stay in contact with friends as well as meet new people from all around the world.

How social media affect our life essay? ›

If the use of social media is not monitored, it can lead to grave consequences. It is harmful because it invades your privacy like never before. The oversharing happening on social media makes children a target for predators and hackers. It also leads to cyberbullying which affects any person significantly.

Is social media is important? ›

Social media - if used intelligently - can bring in loads of success. Since it is the best form of direct contact with the target audience, these platforms have what it takes to make anyone's life better. To understand this better, here are ten aspects that reflect the importance of social media in today's world.

How social media affects our lives? ›

Due to the open transparency and constant accessibility of social media, you may also feel anxiety related to a lack of privacy. On top of that, social media often gives us the sense that we're socializing without actually allowing us to socialize the way we do best—with in-person, direct conversations.

Why social media is important today? ›

Why is social media important? Social media is important because it allows you to reach, nurture, and engage with your target audience — no matter their location. When a business can use social media to connect with its audience, it can use social media to generate brand awareness, leads, sales, and revenue.

How social media affect students? ›

It is easy to become addicted, and research shows that students who spend too much time on social media can suffer from poor sleep, eye fatigue, negative body image, depression, anxiety, cyberbullying, and more.

Is social media good for students? ›

It helps students to share their thoughts without any fear. Social media allows students to express in many ways, like by posting photos, blogs, individual articles, videos, audio clips etc. This helps students to come out of the box and explore their talents.

Is social media good for education? ›

Social media promotes self-directed learning, which prepares students to search for answers and make decisions independently. When reinforced in a classroom setting, these social media skills can be guided and refined to produce better learning outcomes and critical awareness.

What are 3 benefits of social media? ›

Here are five benefits of using social media:
  • Build relationships. Social media is not just about brands connecting with their customers. ...
  • Share your expertise. Social media gives you an opportunity to talk about what you know and what you want to be known for. ...
  • Increase your visibility. ...
  • Educate yourself. ...
  • Connect anytime.
22 Apr 2014

What are the benefits of social media essay? ›

Positive Impacts of Social Media-

It can create awareness for many social issues. There is a fast transfer of information online so that the users can stay well informed. It can also be used as a news medium. There are a few social benefits like communication with long-distance friends and relatives.

Does social media waste your time? ›

Social Media Can Undermine Your Productivity

However, social media is big hindrance for most people. Its big problem comes in the form of interfering with how much time, attention, and effort you put in doing something worthwhile. We all have 24 hours a day and seven days a week.

What are three negative effects of media? ›

Why limit media use?
  • Not enough sleep. Media use can interfere with sleep. ...
  • Obesity. ...
  • Delays in learning & social skills. ...
  • Negative effect on school performance. ...
  • Behavior problems. ...
  • Problematic internet use. ...
  • Risky behaviors. ...
  • Sexting, loss of privacy & predators.
20 Jul 2022

Is social media good for teens? ›

Social media benefits include connection, learning and creativity. Risks include exposure to inappropriate content, cyberbullying, and privacy and data breaches. Written guidelines can help pre-teens and teenagers get benefits while using social media responsibly, respectfully and safely.

What are cons disadvantages? ›

These are latin terms which means “for or against.” Pros - to say something in favour of (It might be some topic, concept and theory). Cons - to say something against. Simply, you can think pros as decribing about the advantages and cons as disadvantages.

What is the most negative social media? ›

Instagram was found to have the most negative overall effect on young people's mental health. The popular photo sharing app negatively impacts body image and sleep, increases bullying and “FOMO” (fear of missing out), and leads to greater feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness.

Is media good or bad? ›

Discuss education, values, and the intrusion of media regularly with your family. There is no definitive answer to whether mass media is "good" or "bad". Research has shown that it can have both positive and negative effects, and often these effects are dependent on how the media is being used and consumed.

Can social media be positive? ›

Social media may provide individuals with a platform that overcomes barriers of distance and time, allowing them to connect and reconnect with others and thereby expand and strengthen their in-person networks and interactions. Indeed, there is some empirical evidence supporting this.

Is social media good for history? ›

At its best, social media is a remarkable mechanism for exchanging ideas, book recommendations and contacts, all of which makes the life of the historian a great deal easier.

What are the pros for social media? ›

Social media allows people to improve their relationships and make new friends. Social media helps empower business women. Social media sites help employers find employees and job-seekers find work. Being a part of a social media site can increase a person's quality of life and reduce the risk of health problems.

What are the cons of social media? ›

Cons
  • It can contribute to social isolation.
  • It can be used as an effective tool for bullying.
  • It is often used to snoop on others.
  • People who use it are more likely to social compare themselves to others.
  • Presents a false idea of “friendship”
  • Research has shown that it can increase feelings of depression and anxiety.
31 Mar 2022

What are the pros and cons of social media for students? ›

  • 6 Pros & Cons Of Social Media In The Classroom. contributed by Aimee Hosler.
  • Engaged students are more successful. ...
  • Social media teaches important life lessons. ...
  • It's 'real world' ...
  • The Internet is a new medium for bullying. ...
  • Social media can be a time suck.
  • The Internet is a dangerous place.

What are 3 advantages and 3 disadvantages of social media? ›

  • Educational process. ...
  • Online marketing. ...
  • Information spreads fast. ...
  • It lets us share anything with others. ...
  • It helps you to achieve your goals. ...
  • Privacy problems. ...
  • It changes lifestyle habits, and it is sleep disruption. ...
  • Lacks emotional connection.
19 Jan 2019

Is social media bad or good? ›

Since it's a relatively new technology, there's little research to establish the long-term consequences, good or bad, of social media use. However, multiple studies have found a strong link between heavy social media and an increased risk for depression, anxiety, loneliness, self-harm, and even suicidal thoughts.

Is social media is good for society? ›

The truth is that social media can also be beneficial for society. It can help individuals connect and deepen their relationships. Social media also encourages students to learn and grow. And it can empower businesses to build their audiences and boost their bottom line.

Is social media useful? ›

Social media helps people strengthen their relationships, create new connections, and find social support in tough times. Nowadays, most of us use social to keep in contact with friends and family. One study found that 93% of adults use Facebook to connect with family while 91% with friends.

How social media affect our life? ›

Due to the open transparency and constant accessibility of social media, you may also feel anxiety related to a lack of privacy. On top of that, social media often gives us the sense that we're socializing without actually allowing us to socialize the way we do best—with in-person, direct conversations.

What makes social media bad? ›

Although there are important benefits, social media can also provide platforms for bullying and exclusion, unrealistic expectations about body image and sources of popularity, normalization of risk-taking behaviors, and can be detrimental to mental health.

How social media affect our life essay? ›

If the use of social media is not monitored, it can lead to grave consequences. It is harmful because it invades your privacy like never before. The oversharing happening on social media makes children a target for predators and hackers. It also leads to cyberbullying which affects any person significantly.

Is social media good or bad for students points? ›

While social media provides many benefits, such as giving students the chance to express themselves creatively, learning opportunities, and the chance to connect with others, social media can also have a negative impact on students, both physically and mentally.

What are 7 advantages of social media? ›

7 Benefits of Social Media You Can't Afford to Ignore [...
  • It's cost-effective.
  • It provides authenticity.
  • It compliments advertising.
  • It fosters your creative voice.
  • It provides a forum for customer care.
  • It builds engaged communities.
  • It helps search engine optimization.
12 Oct 2020

What are 2 negatives of social media? ›

However, social media use can also negatively affect teens, distracting them, disrupting their sleep, and exposing them to bullying, rumor spreading, unrealistic views of other people's lives and peer pressure. The risks might be related to how much social media teens use.

Is social media good for history? ›

At its best, social media is a remarkable mechanism for exchanging ideas, book recommendations and contacts, all of which makes the life of the historian a great deal easier.

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