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In Focus

Social media has become a part of everyday life. Friends and family stay connected from states away, you can stay on top of community events and even sell items. There aren’t many people who don’t stay connected on some form of social media these days.

It still amazes me how much social media has grown, how many platforms there are, and how many kids, at younger and younger ages, are joining.

Back in the days of dial-up internet, MySpace was really the only thing. I remember getting excited when features appeared to customize your profile page and add music. And everyone’s first friend was Tom. Chatrooms were the most exciting thing. You talked to random strangers about random stuff and your introduction was “what’s your ASL?” (age, sex, and location). You can see why chatrooms quickly became prime stocking grounds for predators.

When I hit college, Facebook was just starting up and you had to be a college student to join. I remember they would send a verification email to your college email address for confirmation before you could even get into Facebook. It was literally all college-aged kids, and it was much less chaotic. Times sure have changed.

Many people have multiple social media accounts now. Honestly, how do you keep up with them all? For my job, social media is a huge benefit and is convenient.

But it seems to me there are more downsides to social media these days. There are more predators, more kids online not protecting themselves and it’s another platform for bullying.

Everyone films everything and puts it online for the world to see, often without knowing the full story behind the footage. People are quick to judge and lives are easily destroyed, often for the wrong reasons.

For example, an employer checking out social media when they are looking to hire someone. A post a person made years ago can jeopardize getting a position they apply for many years later. People have become very critical as many post things about their everyday life online.

Social media has changed they think and act. Social media can be beneficial but it’s not all good. There seem to always be problems.

I just wish....more people would think it through before posting stuff online....there were fewer kids online....there weren’t predators and scammers....people would actually fact check and look into what’s being posted before blindly believing everything is true that they read or see on the internet.


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