By Jenny Labrousse
While stumbling upon Margie Warrel’s Seduced by Social Media: Is Facebook Making You Lonely?, I have come to the conclusion that the world obsessed with Facebook.
As Warrel questions: “Are you often checking in on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other one of the new social media networks? If so, then it’s very likely you’ve been unwittingly seduced by them. That is, that you’ve fallen into the trap of relying on them for affirmation, validation, and a sense of belonging that they can never fully provide. At least not for long. Which is why you keep returning for more. And more. And more. But it’s never enough.” Facebook users have been seduced.
It’s as if Facebook has become an addiction for some users, checking their newsfeed at every waking moment—even using it as a newspaper when they first wake up in the morning. It is never enough. It’s like a drug. Waiting for those “likes” on that picture you just posted, or posting something to someone’s wall: this has become the norm for many individuals. It’s an obsession.
Don’t get me wrong; I too, see the value in Facebook for connecting with others and being entertained by the newsfeeds that pop up. But what about logging off and “confronting the reality of our lives” every so often? What about having the good ol’ fashioned face-to-face conversations with individuals? Where has that reality gone? According to Warrel, “Social media can nurture cowardice. It fuels a sense of bravado and gives us false courage to say things online we would never have the guts to say in person. It also provides an all-too-convenient means of hiding behind playing ‘pretend’ and avoiding harsh realities in our lives.” Ultimately, Facebook is acting as a catalyst for diminishing the reality of meaningful relationships. Nothing, though, can replace the value of a real, genuine relationship.
Harvard dropout Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook with two of his college roommates and fellow students right out of his college dormitory on April 28, 2014. Strikingly, since then, there are now more individuals on Facebook than the entire US population. As explained in the documentary, “with over half a billion users across the world,” Facebook has been a revolutionary tool in the world. It has been involved in reviving and ending careers, is “being used by police to find criminals, and by ordinary people to search for loved ones.” Widely used, Facebook is an integral piece of social media at many individual’s fingertips.
According to a video by Alex Trimpe called The World is Obsessed With Facebook:
- As of 2011, there are 500,000,000 active Facebook users. That’s one in every 13 people on earth.
- 48% of 18-48 year olds check Facebook right when they wake up.
- The 35+ demographic now represents more than 30% of the entire user base.
- There are 206.2 Million internet users in the US. That means 71.2% of the U.S Web audience is on Facebook.
- 57% of people talk more online than they do in real life.
- 48% of young Americans said that they find out about news through Facebook.
- A record breaking 750 million photos were uploaded to Facebook over the New Year’s weekend.