Social Media: Friend or Foe?

Emma Schifferl, Assistant Editor-in-Chief

In 2021, social media is something that routinely comes up in conversation. Whether you’re talking about what it does to the developing mind, how it affects day-to-day events in the world at large, how people use it, or just the platforms themselves, social media will undoubtedly surface in both positive and negative lights.

I’ve grown up in a generation of evolving technology. When I got my first phone, one of the first apps I used was Instagram. Snapchat made me happy for no apparent reason. I wanted to be like my friends, so I got into social media and put myself out there, trying to fit in. However, I got those apps at age 11 or 12. Now I’ve had them for nearly six years. In that time, I’ve matured a lot and started to realize how bad those apps can be for some people. I now realize that I was one of the people who the apps were affecting negatively.

After some thought, in mid-January, I deleted Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok. While my friends had some things to say, I at least wanted to detox from these apps. I thought that I would last about a week without social media, but one week has evolved into two months.

I can say that in those two months, I have come to dislike social media. While I do believe that it has some positives in terms of spreading awareness and sharing important topics, I didn’t find it personally beneficial. I felt that I almost had to “pretend,” making sure that I was answering people, constantly checking Twitter for updates on current events or a funny tweet from a content creator who I appreciated. It was getting to a point where it was affecting my school work, and I knew that I had to forget the apps that many find essential and try life without them, at least for a little bit. Even if it’s just for the weekend, I truly believe that not going on social media (and even getting rid of it) is refreshing.