Senior Sentiments: Social media runs our lives

The first thing that most college students do when they wake up is turn over to their phone and check if they have any notifications from their various social media sites. A lot of people that I’ve talked to about this have confessed to me that they actually check their social media sites before even getting ready for class, work or other various endeavors during the day. According to abcnews.com, a study showed that 79% of people in a group of 7,446 iPhone and Android users between the ages of 18 and 44, checked their phones within the first 15 minutes of waking up.
It has become a popular thing for people, both young and old, to have some sort of social media. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Vine and many other social media sites have literally taken over a lot of people’s daily lives. Facebook is one of the biggest ones. According to abcnews.com, people with smartphones check their Facebooks approximately 14 times a day.
Have you met someone who doesn’t have a Facebook or Instagram account and scolded them as being weird for not having one? It has become the norm for people to use at least one kind of social media. If you notice, even parents, teachers and pre-teens have jumped on the social media bandwagon. Social media is really taking over the world.
I think that social media’s main purpose is to connect friends and family. However, it can potentially hurt you when it comes to looking for a job. For example, many companies, during their hiring process, will check your social media to see if their perceptions of you were accurate or if you would be a good fit for their company. Some applications, like a summer camp application that I filled out last summer, asked for my Facebook link and asked for permission to use it as a reference. The fact that companies factor social media websites into the hiring process truly proves that they have become an important part of people’s lives.
I am not against social media at all. I enjoy sharing annoying statuses on my Facebook, posting pictures with friends on Instagram and revining hilarious Vines. However, I ultimately think that there has to be a limit to what becomes an unhealthy relationship with social media. Checking every five minutes for a notification on your phone, computer or tablet is not a healthy thing to do. It actually, in my belief, deters you from paying attention in class and at work, or from building strong friendships and relationships with people face to face.
I am not giving up social media, but I am actually going to attempt to steer away from a constant connection with my social media in order to fulfill my daily goals. At the end of the day, social media can take over the entire world, but I will no longer allow it to take over me like I’ve allowed it to do for the last few years.
-Walter Saravia
Senior English and
gender and sexuality studies major

Printed in the 2/19/14 edition

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