SOCIAL MEDIA; COIGN OF VANTAGE OR DRAWBACK By Azeezah Olatunde
SOCIAL MEDIA; COIGN OF VANTAGE OR DRAWBACK?
Unarguably, social media is the most growing and the fastest means of communication in our contemporary world. More often than not, it has been a platform for social interaction. Simply defined, social media refers to the means of interactions among people in which they create, share, and/or exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks.
Among the domains of social media includes, but not limited to; Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram , Snapchat, YouTube etc. This has come to make means of communication much easier than before. All the platforms came at a point when technological advancements is highly needed in the society.
Social Media is the rapid way to spread any information whether written, audio or visual. For instance students can easily click on a YouTube video and watch a viral news than tuning the television into a news station. In Nigeria, some of the less privileged citizens don’t have access to some news happening in the Middle East like Syria, Gaza, Rohingya, because this aren’t aired or reported by our local TV stations. Social Media then brought the news to our door step via audio and visual.
The rate at which news is spread across the globe is now recording faster than before. Recently, I got a Facebook notification of a friend of mine who was marking himself save from the flooding that occurred in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. I quickly opened my link to Al Jazeera just to read more about the whole event and to have deeper understanding of what’s going on in Ivory Coast. If not for the help of the media, that wouldn’t have been possible.
However, there lies numerous disadvantages of it which has made the youth in particular ‘victim of technology’. Without doubt, every sword has a double edge, social media has its positive and negative impact in the society. The advantages and good usage maybe much but the disadvantages is always dangerous and sometimes leads to a disastrous ends.
One of the major disadvantages is addiction. Youths are addicted to social media so much that it takes almost all their time. A case study here, is my experience with a pedestrian who had accident on a roadside in Lagos, due to lack of concentration while chitchatting on social media.
I was at a Bank some months ago and I could remember vividly a lady who was carried away by social media and unfortunately for her, in less than few minutes she got her leg strucked inside some drainage walkway which led to her serious injury.
Another plight is the issues of fraud and scam. A lot of tactics have been developed to exploit the masses. Cases of student who wish to purchase their school forms but ended up being scammed has been heard on several occasions. Internet indeed is another method to implement tasks of deceit and frauds.
Misinformation, underinformation, etc can easily be spread which can mislead people to take the wrong steps. Information based on assumption can also be written by unruly journalist to defame dignitaries. Also, social media became a tool to spread corruption which has led to the provision of different websites to download Pornographic videos, which as a result of these lead teenagers to the practice of the acts they have watched. But on the other hand, We have many websites that are beneficial to us, the likes of Knowislam.com.ng, Islamqa.com, Aljazeera.com etc only if the youths can just forsake their bad ways and find a better website option which will have a great impact in their lives.
All these negatives impact of social media must be curbed with great force. Youths should make sure they limit the amount of attention given to the social media and make sure it doesn’t take up most of their time. Also people and particularly the students should ensure that they don’t fall into the wrong hands, that is the fraudsters to avoid being scammed, and we should make sure we verify any information before spreading them and should stop cooking up false stories about a person.
Almighty God said, “O you who believe! If a rebellious evil person comes to you with a news, verify it, lest you harm people in ignorance, and afterwards you become regretful to what you have done.” (Quran 49:6).
In conclusion, I urge everyone to use social media judiciously and it’s therefore pertinent to restrain all sort of demerits. The positive effects such as connectivity, updates of information, advertisement, good innovation and influence to people’s life and so on are the method we should adopt in making use of the social media for the increment, proliferation and augmentation of development both morally, educationally, economically and politically in the society.
© Azeezah Olatunde (PenTalks)
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