Even though the U.S. might be the place of origin for Facebook, America’s use of the Internet, particularly social media is quite limited compared to the social media obsession found in developing countries.
According to statistic results of Pew Research Center; Philippines, Russia, Egypt in addition to 14 more developing countries outperform the U.S. in the matter of the capacity of Internet users who log on to social network web sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn. The Pew Research Center report also detected the access of people living in third world countries to the Internet is not limited to computers and laptops, but also smartphones are popular and used by many people. However, the use of smartphones is limited to texting as well as capturing and exchanging photos.
The reason why social network is becoming obsessive is because life has become increasingly stressful especially in developing countries. With the social,political and economic unrest, people have been trying to breakout of the confinements in real life. People use social media to connect with old friends, find new partners, generate ideas, share views openly with no restrictions, talk about sensitive topics that deal with politics and religion. It is also used as a method to share videos, images as well as news. Perhaps this justifies when people in the developing nations get online, the Internet becomes part of their daily lives.
Analytics demonstrated Egypt as the the highest among third world countries in the use of the Internet, particularly social networking websites, with the rate of 88 percent people accessing the world wide web. Russia and the Philippines came in second place with a proportion of 86 percent of Internet users using mainly social media websites. Although the percentages show that people in developing countries are on good terms with technology and advanced communicating methods, they still show a harmful impact on personal levels.
Social media is a double-edged weapon that has its advantages and disadvantages. In spite of the fact that social media plays a vital role in socializing, entertaining, enlightening and reuniting people, the excessive use of it, manages to destroy family bonding as some reports suggested that one of five marriages were ruined by Facebook. Moreover, it tends to become an addiction and thus, time consuming. According to recent studies, people who are obsessed with social media tend to spend an average of eight to 10 hours per week on social networking websites. Besides ,some of these websites do not provide enough privacy and security. In fact the most potential risk of social media is hacking. Incidents of profiles and accounts being hacked are common issues. In addition, the lack of social interaction could result in people becoming introverts and may cause serious stressful mental diseases. Last but not least, over-using social media will significantly diminish face to face interaction and body language communication skills.
To sum it up, social media is a very essential form of communication that should be practiced by everyone. However, obsessive use of social media by developing countries will transform it from being a human friendly social technology to become a destructive power for human relationships.
By: Mona Salman