Impacts of Social Media Sites on the Youths
Social media sites are regarded as web-based services that offer opportunities to people to create a personal profile with the option of determining the list of users that can connect with them (O’Keeffe, 2011). Individuals are connected in a public forum, which provides features like blogging, chatting, mobile connectivity, photo or video sharing, and video calling. Majority of people on social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram tend to spend more hours in such sites to browse through people’s updates, download videos, and pictures, and to chat with their online friends, as a way of keeping themselves connected to each other. These social networking sites have resulted in addiction among the youths thereby making it challenging for them to concentrate in either academics or work since they prefer logging to their media sites to find out what their friends have posted. While some of the youths have derived some benefits in social media sites, some have been weakened academically through the use of such sites. To limit the negative effects of social media addiction, individuals should set limits in regards to when to use or access websites.
Researchers have portrayed how social media sites like Myspace, Twitter, and Facebook have gained popularity over time because of their attractive features that have made youths to be fascinated towards them (Valkenburg, Peter, & Schouten, 2006). They argue that due to the popularity of social networking sites among the youths, the current generation tends to distract themselves from academics and professions despite the sites developing social and friendly ties with the world. Previous studies have stated that men spend more time on social media sites than women since women tend to browse on essential issues of life. While the youths tend to actively participate in discussions that enable them to express their views and opinions in social media sites, they do not take such discussions beyond media platform but forget them immediately they log out of their sites. For that reason, media sites like Facebook and Twitter have proven to be a boon to most youths in regards to spreading awareness about current issues that arise in the society (Valkenburg, Peter, & Schouten, 2006). Studies have also been conducted to determine the influence that social media have on the lives of students. The research found out that most youths studying are influenced by their friends to join social networking sites. According to the study, youths who are influenced by friends in schools tend to perform poorly in academics.
Social networking sites are an online platform that is used by people to build social relations or build social networks with various people who share similar career interests, backgrounds, real-life connections, and activities (Boyd & Ellison, 2007). The impact of social media sites on the youths is significant; hence, it has become part and parcel of human life. Majority of adolescents are using tablets, Smartphones, and laptops to check status updates and Tweets from their online families and friends. Because of the advancement in technology, people, especially the youths, are being pressured to live distinct lifestyles. Social networking platform enables people to become socially capable by allowing account owners to create web content, share information, and converse with each other. Since youths are considered builders of a nation, when they become addicted to social media sites, they will lose focus in their endeavors thereby making them fail in their profession or academics. Social media if not limited in use can have negative to the life of the user. Therefore, this study indents to discuss the impacts of social media sites on the youths.
It is essential to incorporate ideas that pertain to the study through relevant questions to help readers understand the topic in distinct dimensions. Questions asked can help inspire potential solutions to the problem of negative social media impact on the youths. The questions are designed to find connection and balance that exists between social media and the youths.
RS1: What is the relationship between social media use and gender?
H10: Though there is no relationship between gender and social media use, researchers have found out that men highly use social networking sites when compared to women.
QS2: How has development in technology-enhanced social media growth and use among the youths?
H20: Technology has enhanced the use of social media sites in distinct geographical regions thereby enabling the youths to not only access the internet but also different gadgets like laptops and smartphones.
The study will use a quantitative research method since a large population composed of students in a learning institution will be surveyed. The research will focus on learning institution that has free internet in the entire compound. Quantitative research uses larger samples that are attained via a precise process. It is because the use of large samples would result in data that can be generalized thereby making it easier to predict the outcome in the population. The quantitative research methodology is described as a manipulative or experimental study that uses quasi-experimental design, hypothesis testing, and mathematical (Bernard, 2017). As such, in the case of this study, variables would be manipulated to determine differences that will arise in the final results.
The study will use a Quasi-experimental design to determine the relationship between social networking sites and their prevalence among youths. Quasi-experiment entails the use of a less controlled specimen. It will, therefore, be essential to use subject variables, gender, and age of the students in the study. Grouping scholars based on gender and age will help the researcher arrive at a generalized outcome that can help identify prevention measures to the problem.
The theoretical framework for the study includes game theory, feminist theory, and social learning theory (Aparicio, Bacao, & Oliveira, 2016). Social Learning theory was developed by Albert Bandura. The theory holds constructs, which determine, predict, and describe human behavior. The application of the theory to the study would help describe socialization and its impacts on the development of individual behavior among students upon interaction with their online friends and families. The theoretical bases act as an individual’s learning process that influences people’s socialization with each other. On the other hand, applying feminist theory will enable the researcher to analyze the status of both women and men in society and how the use of social media sites influences their interaction with each other. The theory is mostly concerned with voicing the needs of women in society. Finally, the application of game theory will help explain the interaction that individuals have with each other through online games that are posted on social networking sites like Facebook.
In brief, the study has enlightened people of how effective and ineffective the use of social media sites can have on the youths. With reference to the research, it is evident how youths are intelligent, witty, and smart in the current era. Social networking sites serve the purpose of connecting people across the globe thereby availing a platform that enables social media users to meet new friends, gain exposure, and share experiences. Though social media sites like Facebook and Twitter enable people to connect with each other, when not controlled can lead to addiction. Since youths compose of a high percentage of social media users in the globe, addiction to sites like Twitter and Facebook can result in them failing in their academics and professions. Therefore, individuals should come up with limits that control their use of social media sites.
Aparicio, M., Bacao, F., & Oliveira, T. (2016). An e-learning theoretical framework. Journal of Educational Technology & Society, 19(1), 292-307.
Bernard, H. R. (2017). Research methods in anthropology: Qualitative and quantitative approaches. Rowman & Littlefield.
Boyd, D. M., & Ellison, N. B. (2007). Social network sites: Definition, history, and scholarship. Journal of Computer-mediated Communication, 13(1), 210-230.
O’Keeffe, G. S., & Clarke-Pearson, K. (2011). The impact of social media on children, adolescents, and families. Pediatrics, 127(4), 800-804.
Valkenburg, P. M., Peter, J., & Schouten, A. P. (2006). Friend networking sites and their relationship to adolescents’ well-being and social self-esteem. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 9(5), 584-590.
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