%11 of online adults say it would be hard to give up Social Media. I think they’re lying.
More American adults are online than ever before. We love the Internet. There are so many things we can do on the Internet! A study from the Pew Research Center says that %87 of American adults are online. When asked to choose between cell phones, the Internet, television, and landlines, the study showed that they would have the most trouble giving up the Internet. It makes sense, as with the Internet you can watch television easily, and even make calls! (Writing this now from a separate continent than most of my friends and all of my loved ones, I’ll just add that Internet calls and Skype sessions are great and cheaper and who still has a landline?)
So we love the Internet. Not surprising. More surprising is that our love for the Internet apparently doesn’t translate to a love for Social Media. According to the study, only %11 of adults who are online said they would find it very hard to leave Facebook, Twitter, etc. Of course, this doesn’t change the fact that apparently %72 of U.S. adults online have some sort of social media presence. So we’re talking a big talk, but we’re not really walking the walk here.
I’m not sure when it started, but it somehow became cool to hate on social media—specifically Facebook. Personally, I don’t think the problem lies with the product, I think it’s with the consumers; it’s not Facebook, it’s how we’ve started using Facebook. It doesn’t have to be this awful addiction that makes us doubt ourselves and feel constantly judged. We can make the choice to not compare ourselves to our friends, or worse—our Facebook friends and real life acquaintances. We can limit our time spent on Facebook.
Let’s change our intent. Take a picture because you want a picture to remember this moment by, not so that the kids you went to high school with can see that you went to a party and probably have friends.
Photo courtesy of Flickr User The Next Web
Post a picture because you wish your cousin could see this beautiful sight and be there with you. Post an album so that three years from now you can accidentally click on the link and relive a really terrific experience. Know how social media affects you the same way you should know how alcohol, or spicy food affect you. Know yourself. Use social media only to the extent that you enjoy it. But hey, if you try all this and it still doesn’t work for you? Then give up social media. Go for it. No one is stopping you. Walk the walk.