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What? You’re not immersed in Social Media?

Introduction:

I was in the car driving with a few of my friends discussing old acquaintances and friends.  The focus was on an individual who upon graduating high school aimed to “rediscover himself”.  The ways that he did this drew some important questions.  He decided to delete his social media accounts (Facebook, MySpace, Twitter), and move out of the city.  I feel as though currently growing up, there are plenty of pressures associated with online trends.  Individuals who do not succumb to being a part of “Facebook” society are seen as outcasts, as if they have something to hide.

The Case against Social Media:

Not all individuals see these outlets as viable forms of communication and entertainment.  Yes, it is convenient to have 1 website where family and friends around the world can be literally a fingertip away; however individuals who value their privacy should choose other outlets.  It has been recently reported that in the fine term agreements with “Instagram” that users who have uploaded pictures of 6 months or longer now give the actual rights to Instagram themselves. This allows Instagram to re-sell, advertise, and distribute these photos at their own will.  This user agreement takes away the privacy from its users.  The alarming factor in all this is that recently Facebook has bought out Instagram, which raises some questions going forward for Facebook users. Will you feel comfortable knowing that Facebook has access to all your private conversations? Pictures? Data that can potentially be used against you in the future, or for monetary gain?  The fact that Facebook has X amount of users, all with currently valid email addresses, phone numbers and private information, potentially makes them the largest human data base known since the Internet was invented.

The Impact of Social Media on our Generation:

The impact that Social Media outlets have had on our generation have been astounding.  There are plenty of positives such as ability to interact around the world, raise awareness of global issues, and the ability for individuals to have a designated “slate” in the online world.  There are downsides to this though.  The case of increased “cyber-bullying” that has been occurring due to manipulation of pictures, discussions of hate and death threats.  There is minimal regulation that occurs in these situations, and often times it is too late, the damage is done. There has been a massive amount of awareness for this issue, such as the following clip. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bdQBurXQOeQ

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