Social Media: Moderation is Key (Part II)

Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, LinkedIn. These names are now part of our daily lives.

By Sarah Langot

And yet there are people who are fighting their own cyber-addiction by trying to get off these social media sites.

Alice studies contemporary dance. She is in her 20s. She appreciates art, and is passionate about nature.

Alice hasn’t completely cut herself off from social media. She regularly uses Snapchat and Facebook, but has left Instagram aside. That application was part of her life for eight full years. She explains that Instagram’s function has changed since it was first created.

She is especially critical of the constant product placements on that platform. She thinks it’s a tool used to get us to overconsume.

Questions

The fact she no longer uses Instagram has caused those in her entourage to ask her a lot of questions. Their puzzlement, she thinks, can be explained by the fact that social media has made itself central to how our society works. We use it to look for work as much as to keep in touch with and maintain our own personal support network.

Despite that, she’d like to detach herself in order to interact with her real network, composed of individuals she can “see, touch, feel hear, and who function without the Internet.”

The time we spend on social media reduces our capacity to concentrate, she says. And she condemns how we surround ourselves with a virtual world to escape reality.

She thinks it’s a good thing that we can forge ties with people from all over the world, but that we’ve missed the opportunity to actually meet people because of social media. Notifications and messages cut those moments short.

“Social media is neither positive nor negative. It’s what we decide to do with it,” Alice says. Her goal is to wean herself off of it completely, little by little.

According to her, it chains us to our cellphone, and it stops us from building a world where everyone really listens to themselves and to others. She puts the emphasis on discovering the outside world, without a phone, because despite ourselves we have become dependent on that little object.

First seen in Reflet de Société, Vol. 28, no. 2, printemps (spring) 2020, pages 16-17  

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