Social media is a popular computer technology that allows us to connect with other people online, make new friends, communicate with them, and even learn something new. Social media is one of the most important aspects of the Internet, and today we can find many social networking websites all over the internet that serves various purposes. For example, Facebook is a website where you can post photos, videos, status updates, start a video and voice calls, read some latest news, etc., whereas Instagram, for example, has the possibility of uploading photos and videos.
On the other side, there are some great social media websites and tools focused on delivering features for video and voice calls like Viber, Skype, or WhatsApp. Every social networking website or app has its own pros and cons, but here, we are talking about entire social media and its advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages of Social Media
Social media at its core provides several functionalities that are extremely useful for the users. We talked a lot about them in the advantages and disadvantages of Facebook article. Being a social media network, that will provide you with great insight. But, if you need a general view by taking social media as a whole, this section will help you. These are the advantages of social media.
1. Connect with other people over the world
When the first social media websites emerged, we never expected it would emerge into something that we see today. Their main goal was to allow users to connect with each other, let them communicate. This is also one of the biggest advantages of social media, as we can now connect to each other and communicate easily. For example, on Facebook, people can create their own group chats or groups where they can talk about anything, from usual stuff to education, business, etc. This aspect of social media allows us to communicate with our relatives, which is great to keep in touch with them if you don’t get to meet them often.
The best examples of such communication tools are Skype, Facebook, and WhatsApp. These apps allow for free calling at any time and are a great example of social networking apps that are focused on connecting people.
2. Real-time news and updates
As social media technology progressed, they didn’t only allow for communicating with other people, but for education and real-time news reporting. This is very important for a social networking website in terms of versatility and has a great impact on people in terms of overall usage. People can now see the forecast, sports news, political news, and other news all around the globe. It’s interesting that because of this feature, many older people are using social networking websites to stay informed about forecasts or news to date.
3. Possibility for Business Development
It’s certain that many people use social media for general fun and entertainment, but not many people know that social media can give a dramatic boost to business development. How is this possible? Well, for one company to succeed, it must proclaim to people about its presence, and because a vast majority of people use social media, it’s nowadays the easiest way of doing so.
The best way to advertise a company or services is by using a popular social network such as Facebook, where you can post pictures of the company, products, or services that your company offers. As you probably know, almost every big and small company has its own website and Facebook page, where you can directly contact them or the seller of the particular service. So, definitely social media is a great opportunity for business development.
4. Social medias are Fun
Whether you are a heavy or a light social media user, you must admit that it can be really fun. Education and business aren’t the only things going on social media, so you can find much interesting stuff like funny videos, pictures, status updates, and even meet someone new. This makes social networking websites great for killing time, having fun, and generally spending your free time in a fun way.
5. Get recognized
There are millions of people all over the globe who has excellent skills in a certain area, but it doesn’t have a platform to showcase it to the world. Social media eradicates this issue by providing a free, and huge platform for anyone to shine. So if you are an artist, techie, teacher, or whatever area you are good at, all you have to do is create a social media profile and post them for the world to see. Of course, luck and similar factors play a significant role, but at least you have a place to give it a try for free of cost.
6. Social Media is good for Marketing
Social media is good at bringing people close. It has also made the world much more compact. Today, anyone can have a following in the hundreds of thousands. He can have an audience. That’s why social media is so good for marketing. Social media marketing is not only cheaper, but often more effective. If a video gets watched over 100 million times, any organization would pay hefty bucks to place an ad there. This social media phenomenon has led to the rise of social marketers or influencers. Hence, using social media not only allows you to stay connected to your peers, but also offers an opportunity to earn serious money.
Disadvantages of Social Media
Like any other thing in this world, social media also has disadvantages. We talked about why social media is bad previously. But that didn’t cover the cons of using it in depth. So, here are the disadvantages of social media.
1. Social Media is a privacy disaster
One of the biggest concerns while using social media is privacy. Privacy on social media is a very important factor and is often neglected by many people using them, either due to unawareness or simply because they don’t care. As there is a possibility of posting pictures of yourself or giving out your personal info, privacy can be easily violated. Not just other users that are using the platform, but the social media website itself can do a lot of damage.
If you decide to get into social media, it’s best to give as little information as you can about yourself. If you really want, however, you can provide less-important info like your favorite movies, books, or music which the website cannot use to track you. Especially due to the raising concerns of privacy from the social media giants such as Facebook, it is better to be a bit careful.
2. A huge base of false information
If you just open your web browser, you can see that there are many websites where you can get pieces of information, ranging from Google to Wikipedia. The same thing is happening on social media. On social networking websites, pieces of information are scattered, and while some of them are genuine, there is a lot of non-genuine content.
Aside from that, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram can become demanding if you have a lot of friends or followers, and most of them are posting videos, photos, or status updates, so it’s best to have a selected group of friends added. That too, those whom you trust. Do not blindly believe everything you see on social media, or online in general, without proper research. Because technology can bring social changes way too faster than you could imagine.
3. Less physical activities
How many times you’ve seen people holding their phones and sitting on the couch while browsing through social media websites? You see it probably every day. This has become a major problem, especially for young people, under the age of 20. Social networking websites tend to evoke some kind of addiction, because of their possibilities, making the users far more interested in spending their time on such websites than the real life. This is not always the issue with the users but can become a serious concern if social media is used for hours without any physical activities.
Social networking websites can sometimes be very distracting, to the point where the user forgets or even skips doing his daily activities. Usually, the problem happens to those who are engaged too much in such social media websites or apps, especially when they have a lot of friends or groups they are active on, so almost every minute there is a new message, a new video posted, or a new picture of a friend. Try to minimize the number of friends on Facebook and accept only the person you know in real life. If not, it can distract you even if you didn’t want to.
5. Expectations for acceptance
Social media is a place where you see a lot of people that you even don’t know. There are millions of posts being published every single day, even more comments, likes, etc. Especially if you are not that “popular kid” on the block, you might find being recognized on social media as a huge advantage. Which might lead to neglecting your real life. Being recognized is one thing, and craving for it is another. Being used to that will make your life a lot harder, especially if you see a mean comment under one of your photos.