A lot of people who use social media sites like Myspace or Facebook do so to keep track of and communicate with friends. These friends could be from kindergarten, college, or work, but they are all considered friends of the person befriending them. This works well if all people on the friends list can interact with each other or can handle what others have to say, but what happens when someone deliberately posts a comment that is meant to dig at someone else? What if someone misinterprets what is said in a comment and starts to argue with the person whose friend left the original comment? This is where social media becomes a battleground for people who dislike each other but who have a common friend battle it out with words and comments.
People are willing to share more information today than they were 5 years ago and it is affecting everything from friendships to relationships, and even jobs. People are getting fired for posting pictures of how drunk they got over the weekend or posting comments like “callin’ in sick today, so hungover…” Relationships are being torn apart by ex boyfriends or girlfriends leaving menacing comments or current boyfriends / girlfriends leaving nasty remarks that someone’s ex might see if they go to that person’s myspace or facebook profile. Some people go as far as uploading videos for their entire friend’s list of people to see of themselves at parties getting drunk and acting slutty or trying to act tough and fighting someone. Is this too much information for people to see about you? Do you really want to have your friend back home show everyone how stupid you look when you’re drunk, or how immature you sound as you leave comments on people’s pages in hopes of it hurting someone’s feelings, just to make yourself feel better? Do people really care about the status of your bathroom trip that you tweeted to twitter?
Part of the problem, and this lies more with Myspace than Facebook, is that the profile pages are public for everyone to see until that user sets it to private. Now if there was a way of preventing certain friends to see you pictures and comments, and prevent other users from seeing them, then that would alleviate a lot of the problem. But people don’t want to do that much micromanaging to their account. Curiosity will always triumph over rationale, and it’s been bred into humans to be jealous and there’s not much that can be done about that.
Social media has undergone a change that has brought it away from it’s original goal of helping people connect and communicate with friends and family, and has turned into yet another popularity contest outside of high school for people to go through and try and gain acceptance through. What good can come of this? How are people supposed to grow up if they’re constantly in a state of mind like that of a high schooler?
Now don’t get me wrong, there are sites that are considered social media like linkedin which connect professionals who are looking to expand their network of contacts in hopes of branching out into a new job or new field of interest. This is what most social media should try and aim to get back to. Social media should be a way for people to connect and share thoughts or ideas but not promote animosity between people.
Tell me what you think. Do you think we share too much information with the world, or is this what the new generation should be getting i