Friend 1: Hey, I can’t see the Whatsapp status of my friends.
Friend 2: Same here bro! I can’t even use Insta!
Friend 1: What the hell is going on?
Friend 2: Is social media down?
Yes, this was the general conversation among several young people. The reason behind such anxiety among young people is their constant engagement with social media platforms. Social Media platforms seem real to them more than the real world.
There are new technologies that are coming in at a fast pace such as the Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Internet of Things. These technologies are being used by the popular social media platforms to enhance the user experience and offer them never-seen-before features within the applications. The popularity of the social media platforms has increased and reached a certain point that has now made them addictive especially to young people.
There were backlashes against some popular social media platforms in recent months regarding their content and the time people spent on them. This has become a widespread menace as the sanity disappears from the users’ usage of a platform. Technology is great power to us, but as the popular saying goes, “with great powers, comes great responsibilities” and so is the case with the current state of social media. Platforms such as Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and so on enable anyone to reach out to billions of users with a single click of a button. However, the content should be worth sharing and the users should also keep in mind that the usage should be mindful and not hurt others or even one’s own self.
The recent outage of Facebook and its applications are not of great concern as the technologies can malfunction sometimes. It is the very nature of everything as no one can be perfect at all times. However, the public reaction was of concern. The services were restored within 9 hours and soon the social media was flooded with several questions, analysis and the ever so popular ‘Memes’ on the outage as if a major calamity had happened.
The social media platforms should take the responsibility to create awareness regarding the mindful usage of their own applications so that they can survive in the long run without harming the users in several ways especially mentally. The tobacco industry had to do this by posting the warning sign on the packages so that the user can get the warning beforehand. It is not important for the social media platforms to warn people but at least they can spread awareness of the fact that over usage of any platform is harmful for the user primarily.