By: Paula Fournier-del Valle, VOXXI
Having always been accustomed to reading and hearing about corrupt politicians, abductions and killings in the daily newspaper and on daily television news reports, social media has become my source of sunshine.
Once I’m done learning about these horrific events I turn on my computer, connect to Wi-Fi and begin browsing the internet with hopes of getting away from all of the negativity.
Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit and BuzzFeed have personally been my source of happiness. Scrolling down Facebook and reading about all of my friends’ accomplishments and aspirations lets me believe that there are so many great things going on around me. Tweeting at celebrities and looking up funny videos on YouTube isn’t my own personal guilty pleasure. Everyone does it!
Victoria Chiriboga, an Ecuadorian student at George Washington University, spends some time on social networks such as Facebook only to read about the good news her family and friends have to share.
“I enjoy reading my newsfeed on Facebook, it helps me stay connected with my family and friends who are still in Quito,” she said. “Facebook is definitely a place where most people in our generation, including myself, go to get ‘light’ news about day to day activities.”
The New York Times recently published an article about a new study that shows that social media is being used as a source of good news rather than bad news. The Times mentioned the following: ”Neuroscientists and psychologists have found that good news can spread faster and farther than disasters and sob stories.”
“People say more positive things when they’re talking to a bigger audience, rather than just one person.”
Social media as an outlet for everyone
All of these social media networks are meant to be used for people to express themselves, show admiration for their sports teams, share pictures of amazing trips and talk about great challenges they have conquered. Why would people go on Facebook and talk about unaccomplished goals and failures? It makes no sense. No one wants to log on to Facebook and see on their newsfeed, “Today was a terrible day.” People want to see “I got into college!” or “My favorite sports team just won the championship!” and “I’m going to be a parent!”
As it was clearly stated in the New York Times article, people feel like they have to share these amazing stories with their friends in order to show off the great things that are happening to them. They are encouraged to share more and more of their accomplishments once they start receiving likes, shares and retweets.
I personally believe that all social media networks are a great way of staying in contact with family and friends, but there are some people who disagree.
How do you feel social media has impacted our society? Do you depend on it as a source of good or bad news? Sound off in the comments!