Here’s a question for you to think about: How often do you log on to any kind of social network? Did you know that 1.7 billion people log onto social networks every day?
There are lots of reasons and ways people use Facebook and other social networks: from “chatting” with friends by video, to posting pictures and leaving comments. Facebook can be fun, fast, and easy to use, but it can quickly overtake your daily life. Teens constantly check their “pages” and posts, which can lead to problems. They get addicted to social media, and can’t live without it. On average, thirteen-year-olds, the age of most teens on social networks, check social media 100 times a day. There are many reasons why teens are checking so often: 61% check social networks to see pictures and posts, 36% check to feel included and make sure they’re not left out, and 21% check to make sure people aren’t gossiping or saying mean things about them.This can lead to addiction. They check their posts as often as they eat, drink,and breathe. Teens need to make sure that God comes first, not social media.
Besides being highly addicting, social networks are very dangerous. Privacy and security is sometimes available on social networks, but you still have a choice about whom you “friend”. Sometimes you can make the wrong choice. Stalking and cyberbullying are serious issues that happen every day, mostly through sites like Facebook. 29% of teens in the U.S get stalked through Facebook every year. 22% get cyber-humiliated or pranked every year. Although stalking is terrible and needs to be stopped, cyberbullying is just as bad. This occurs most often on sites like Ask.Fm, a site where you ask a question and get answers anonymously. Cyberbullies use sites like this to target their victims without easily getting caught. Social networking issues are serious, and should not be taken lightly.
To conclude, social networks, although they are fun, popular, and easy to use, can be highly addicting. Teens should use caution. When they get addicted, they are more likely to be cyber bullied or worse. If there is even the slightest chance that you might be cyberbullying others, remember, when in doubt, don't! If you are being cyber bullied, tell a trusted adult right away. Waiting too long could put you in danger. It’s also important to NEVER respond. Responding will put you in even more danger. And don’t just stay safe, but also make sure the social networks in your life are not taking control.