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Purpose: expose negative effects of social media to persuade youth and young adults to
spend less time on social networking sites
2. Thesis: The negative effects of social media on our self-esteem and personalities can lead
to a lack of personal interaction skills, thus, resulting in a completely virtual society.
3. Individual Effects
a. Need to be accepted/approved
i. Along with relieving emotions, SNS are used to boost ones image and
improve status among peers
1. # of followers is a signal for popularity Toubia
2. Used when one receives a blow to their ego
a. Seek their online profiles to fulfill their self-worth because
they mostly post positive things online Zuo
ii. The need to be accepted or approved online can lead to an even lower selfesteem because one is relying on the gratification of strangers to make
them feel good about themselves.
1. People are more concerned with how others view them (only
posting positive things online) that they are not doing things for
themselves anymore
a. i.e. taking a picture just to post it online, not for ones own
b. Lower self-esteem
i. Study with 128 Facebook users to observe the poor decision making of
people after browsing Facebook for 20 minutes
1. Those who browsed Facebook were more likely to eat cookies over
a nutrition bar
a. Those who browsed FB also reported having lower credit
scores and more credit card debt
ii. Study to observe the self-satisfaction of FB users
1. Those who used FB reported having lower self-esteem
iii. The constant updating of social media and self-presentation leads to a
lower self-esteem and a reliance on other strangers for approval
1. People are relying on virtual connections rather than real-life
2. Keep score and compare ourselves to others; competition
c. Narcissistic personality
i. Their self-image is dependent on their environment (unstable)
ii. SNS can be used as an outlet for self-promotion (posting pictures, etc.)
1. Likes and RTs send positive feedback to these individuals and
boost their self-esteem, which can cause them to become
dependent on this virtual approval
iii. SNS relationships are shallow because most users do not know all of their
FB friends, so users become concerned with what strangers think about
them, which causes a need to post desirable information and pursue trivial
friendships Mehdizadeh

4. Effects on Groups
a. Social interactions are diminished
i. Reduced social cues is a consequence of virtual relationships because it
has shifted towards anonymity and egocentrism
1. Lessen the concern for others, social norms, and conventions
2. Destructive impact on trust, collective norms and shared values
(extra source 2)
ii. Online communication leaves too much room for error because the
recipient can misinterpret a message because the tone and delivery of a
statement is lost
b. Cyber bullying
i. Cyber bullying is easier via internet because we are not inhibited by the
presence of the other
1. Inhibited from aggression by the presence of another face (we are
aware of the other human being)
2. Online, we are disinhibited from taking into full account that we
are in the presence of another human being
ii. The lack of awareness and urge to speak freely online damages
relationships and can lead to cyber bullying. The access to the internet has
opened up new outlets for bullying, so now the victim doesnt even have
to go out to get bullied. This access to say whatever to whoever has been
filtrated by the virtual communication
5. Effects on Society
a. Lack of communication skills
i. Prefer texting over talking because it is less painful and the conversation
can be controlled
1. Conveying hate through an online source is easier than face-to-face
because the person does not have to see the other persons reaction
2. Face-to-face communication teaches skills of negotiation, reading
others emotions, having to face the complexity of confrontation,
dealing with complex emotions Turkle
a. Missing important emotional connections
ii. The internet has taken over communication and the lack of face-to-face
interaction has led to a loss of deep connections
b. Using technology at a young age
i. Prolongs growing up because children has access to their parents at all
times (habit of being in touch with parents)
ii. Teen FB users feel that they no longer have a fresh start from high school
to college because everything they have done is on their FB wall
1. Users feel the need to update their posts to show only desirable
information and the burden to keep up their online appearance
traps one to only care about their reputation
c. Whats next?

i. Society will become completely virtual: virtual doctor visits and a

completely virtual communication system. We will soon lack the skills to

communication successfully and fear face-to-face communication