Writing about social media is something I do frequently. It’s not because it’s some sort of fad or I’m bored. It’s because I genuinely believe it’s a bad influence on culture. To give credit where it’s due, the reason for this writeup is inspired by a recent quote I heard. A quote that I relate to. There’s this odd idea that social media is “needed” and while it has been amazing in many ways, collectively and if you look at it objectively, it trends towards negativity. This inspires me to write about why social media isn’t necessary.
In social media culture, there doesn’t seem to be a line for users between “public” and “private.” We see this on large influencer TikTok accounts. What the reason for this is I don’t know, except maybe attention. A scenario that is always sad. Having a follower count doesn’t mean those followers deserve or need to know everything about you. There is such a thing as a private moment or choice.
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This culture seems to encourage us to run to the Internet with a problem or news. There’s family drama, so followers speculate and theorize, and then there’s crying videos. While you sympathize with anyone struggling, so long as its honest, why does the Internet need an artistic video of us crying? Filming myself in a vulnerable moment is the last thing on my mind. Some of these videos are aesthetically shot. When you’re in the moment, who thinks about setting up something aesthetic to share with the world? This idea that sharing that is required makes me sad.
Where are the people in your daily life to care?
The quote that inspired today’s social media rabbit hole is from Brett Cooper, a Youtube show host. The quote that got me thinking is from a video reacting to drama surrounding one of Hollywood’s most recent stars:
I relate to this so much. We do need boundaries. I don’t take issue with posting things to social media for fun, but there should be a line. Posting an artistic TikTok crying crosses that line. Posting an apology just because two or three get their feelings hurt is also unnecessary. Why? Because if society teaches us nothing, one thing it does is that there’s no appeasing. No matter how many times you shift perspectives or try to please people, you cannot.
I’ve experienced change in the last five or so years, and more in the last two. The way people interact with my accounts is different. I have a supposition for why this is, but whether this is true, I don’t know. What’s concerning is this attitude that social media is this social portal. I reject that idea. We should be out in the world. Getting to know people. Letting people get to know us. Despite the things I observe, I like to think, in person, this would look different. Online rarely seems to have grace.
I want to have a conversation. I crave it sometimes. But the idea of someone becoming angry because they don’t have that same opinion of conversation makes me curious. Question ringing in my mind is, how do we navigate that?
Looking at things large accounts or public figures or influencers post, I often wonder if any of them will look back and wish they hadn’t shared that moment. Will there be a whole generation that looks back with depression or disappointment over things they published? Maybe not. Maybe so. Either way, it’s a society norm I’m not totally comfortable with. While that’s for me to wrestle with and no one else, I do often feel bad for those who publish things that should be for those who love them most.
Sometimes sharing on social media takes away the joy of what should be a good thing. Because sadly, that’s where culture is at.
What are your thoughts on this? Do you have opinions on any of this? Agree or disagree? Where do you stand in baring your soul in a TikTok video? Is it right or seems off? Comment all of your comments. Let’s chat.
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*Honest in meaning they are genuinely struggling and not doing something for sympathy or for a viral experience.