The New Addiction: Social Media


Oladimeji Ajegbile

In the photo taken and created by Oladimeji Ajegbile, a man can be seen crying over instagram likes. Which shows how people care way too much about social media.

Antwuan Sparks, Op-Ed Editor

Social media is home to everything you need and want to know from basketball highlights to recipes for loaded baked potatoes. Social media can be a very resourceful place if used correctly and safely. But social media also can be an addicting place causing the average person to confuse reality with social media.

Everything requires balance within this crazy world we live in, but with the spread of COVID-19, this balance between social media and real everyday life has been tilted. The virus has caused the world to be stuck inside and more importantly devoid of human contact.

Socialization is a vital part of every human’s life. The absence of human contact has made people search for attention, conversation, and even love through social media. Here is where the problem arises: too much social media tends to influence people to do dumb things to replace the attention and time they got from others.

Now, I know even before COVID-19 this was a problem but since the virus has spread this has become a very constant thing. One example of people losing touch with reality is the model who started the “Coronavirus Challenge”. Which included a video of model Meghan McCain licking a toilet seat in the middle of a pandemic.

This is egregious as one she has a lot of influence on the younger generation through the app Tik Tok, a social media app with tons of teens and kids on it. This video caused many other videos to begin popping up on the app showing people licking toilet seats and even licking ice cream cartons within grocery stores that they did not pay for.

Young viewers see a woman like Meghan who has a bit of following and is somewhat attractive do something like this, and this causes the child to follow behind her as to them this is just a  “joke” or just another “challenge.” In reality, this could cause anyone who participates in this challenge to get severely sick. It is just irresponsible, downright egregious and it furthers my point of how people will do anything for that attention they are missing in their everyday lives. 

Even if it means putting themselves along with others in danger. Another instance of this was earlier this month Instagram had a glitch where the likes on posts were hidden for a lot of users, and people were freaking out, it was an uproar for nothing but some likes on the page. Everything else was perfectly fine people could still comment on posts, see the posts, and share the posts, yet people were still upset.

See these people weren’t upset about the app not functioning properly. No. They were upset because they couldn’t see all the attention their posts were getting. See as likes represent acceptance on social media and people simply post for that acceptance and approval of their peers. 

This doesn’t go for everybody but the majority of people go by this thought process. That is also why some people will delete a post of themselves in an outfit they find creative and nice because the post didn’t get enough likes.

This is what social media does to people. They lose a sense of self-worth through the black hole that is Snapchat, Instagram, Tik Tok, and even Facebook. My grandmother,  who is in her early 60s, is insecure about posting certain pictures of herself as she feels she won’t be accepted by others on the app that follow her. This is what social media does to people when too much of it is incorporated into their lives.

This is crazy to me because WHO CARES? Love yourself and everything you do and if somebody doesn’t agree forget them keep being you don’t change yourself or the way you live life for a like on Instagram. Don’t stop loving yourself because of what others say. Don’t stop taking care of yourself and those around you for a Tik Tok trend. Social media unconsciously promotes this type of thinking that every opinion matters besides yours and that couldn’t be more false.

That is why it is important to take breaks away from the screens. Too much social media can cause you to develop some horrible tendencies or even mislead you into doing some dumb things. Try finding a balance between the real world and the internet because if not, you may get lost in the attention-seeking, the fake and misleading world that is social media.