Is Facebook Depressing?
Pediatric Journal Trumpets Warnings To Parents, But Is Facebook Really More Dangerous Than Real Life?
The World has had little trouble being depressed even before Facebook. Image by John LeGear and used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license.
By John Monahan
Modern Times Magazine .com
June 6, 2011 — Last week, the American Academy of Pediatrics released new warnings about social media for children. Among the warnings were that children with self-esteem issues might have a hard time navigating the social landscape of Facebook.
“For some teens and tweens, social media is the primary way they interact socially, rather than at the mall or a friend’s house,” said Gwenn O’Keeffe, MD, FAAP, co-author of the clinical report. “A large part of this generation’s social and emotional development is occurring while on the Internet and on cell phones. Parents need to understand these technologies so they can relate to their children’s online world – and comfortably parent in that world.”
Excuse me while I laugh myself silly.
Is she actually saying that it is any different than real life?
When I went to high school in the celebrated 1980s, the most powerful computer on campus had 56k. But still, my friends and I managed to harass, debase and criticise virtually everyone we came into contact with. We were also lampooned, beaten and harassed by a different group of kids.
Why? Because we were there.
There is no rhyme or reason why such things happen. They just happen. When humans become teenagers, they go through an intense learning mode. They learn how to be rude, misogynistic, narcissistic, depressed, a bully, a weakling, everything under the sun. In the end, most everyone gets picked on and most everyone does at least a little picking.
As a species, we are young and immature during our teens and it shows in our actions. But we are all supposed to learn from such things.
The American Academy of Pediatrics report on kids and social media is nothing more than a laughable attempt to stop teenagers from being judgemental and obnoxious. While it is not the best time in most of our lives, how else can we best learn to be civilized than by being uncivilized.
In news stories across the country after the report was released, kids were interviewed time and time again, they said that Facebook was like a popularity contest and that some kids were ‘snotty’ and ‘rude.’
I am, like, SO shocked.
High school is a popularity contest and some people are snotty and rude. Hmm. Sounds like high school.
According to the report, tweens and teens have a limited capacity for self-regulation and are susceptible to peer pressure, they are at some risk as they engage in and experiment with social media, according to the report. They can find themselves on sites and in situations that are not age-appropriate, and research suggests that the content of some social media sites can influence youth to engage in risky behaviors. In addition, social media provides venues for cyberbullying and sexting, among other dangers. Youth who are more at-risk offline tend to also be more at-risk online.
Heck, I know more adult men who only joined Facebook because of peer pressure. there is no escape from it today. How can you keep up with the ‘Joneses’ when everyone is on Facebook? You’d have to live while perusing your News Feed on Facebook at a mall that has wi-fi.
When will someone finally give the adults of America some social media guidelines they can really use.
Like how you can find the time to actually communicate with old friends you reconnected with thanks to Facebook.
Now that’s something you can really use after you are no longer a teen and time evaporates as fast as you can say Facebook.
John Monahan is a freelance writer currently living in Connecticut.
New FictionChapter 6, “Change In Venue” — When Detective Smith returns from Philly, new details await on the second homicide and he looks forward to a funeral. Mature Audiences Only.
Judgment Day May Have Happened Although Some Think Judgment Day Did Not Occur As Predicted, Reports Have Been Pouring In About Strange Sightings In The Sky And On The Streets.