Social media has its many great properties that make life more interesting and easy to share. It is a fantastic tool for keeping in touch with people and staying informed. It is a phenomenal platform for anyone and everyone to share information and ideas regarding just about any topic(s) you could imagine with limited restrictions and filters. Unfortunately, like all good things, too much or misuse can have devastating consequences. Failure to understand social media can lead to serious errors in judgement, communicative misunderstandings, and relationship breakdowns.
One of the biggest problems with any communicative program or device is the lack of face to face interaction. I get it, that is semi the point of social media as a communication platform. It gives people who are too nervous or scared to interact socially a voice with which to speak. The problem lies in the fact that the vast majority of communication that takes place is nonverbal. When you stick to an online or telephonic communication platform, you are withholding important things like body language and tone. It is all too easy to misinterpret images or messages because you are not there to receive all of the communication. It is also easy to overlook the fact that a lot of your communication is likely to be misinterpreted because they cannot see or hear how you actually feel.
How many times have you looked at a picture on Myspace or Facebook of your significant other with someone and it made you a little jealous? How many times have you seen them like something that made you a little angry? Did you ever stop to ask yourself why that made you jealous or angry? It is just a picture. It is just a like. You don’t know the context, especially if you weren’t there. How many arguments or fights have you been a part of or known about that originated from, or was initiated by, something having to do with social media. It is important to educate yourself about social media and understand the dangers and risks with its use.