The Effect of Social Media


Hope Reiman, Staff Writer

I never really thought about how useful social media was until last year. I feel as though I am pretty experienced when it comes to social media. I know it sounds silly, but everyone is on social media, especially in the generation we live in, where oftentimes kids have a phone in their hand before their first words. I was on social media at the ripe age of 12, and I pretty much did what everyone else does: post stupid pictures and look at stupid pictures. After starting high school was when I started to notice that I got a lot of information from social media too. When school would be canceled from the inevitable hurricane, I found out from the school posting. When there was a celebrity death, it was on people’s stories. We get everything from updates on friends to our daily news from social media.

In 2020 when all the BLM protests were happening is when social media really started to affect me personally and I felt its impact. I would spend my usual hours (give or take) on social media and see the truly devastating things that were going on. I heard stories and saw videos that made me feel like I was a part of things that were nowhere near me. It changed my perspective on a lot of things by allowing me to see things from another’s point of view. Sure, you can look at social media and say it’s just for sharing dumb pictures or memes, but when you take the time to think, you can see that it’s others allowing you into their mind, letting you see what they think and experience, and how it feels from their point of view. Of course, not everything on social media will be like that but often times there is more than you think. With this newfound perspective and thought I was able to do more research outside of social media and really form my own opinion. I was even able to attend my own school’s protest because I saw people sharing the info on social media.

If it wasn’t for my time on social media, none of this would have happened and I honestly could be a completely different person. Social media has helped me grow into the person I am. It may sound like a stretch, but it has helped me find a community and know that there are others like me who deal with the same things. Social media has helped me grow out of my parent’s beliefs and form my own.

It was when I joined my yearbook class, I truly started to understand exactly how much of an impact social media had on other people and their actions. Shortly after joining my school’s yearbook, I had to post things on the school’s Instagram. I had to create polls and post announcements with the intention of delivering correct news to the whole school. Not only that, but I had to learn about what goes into the management of an account after becoming the leader of the social media team at my school. There is so much more that goes into it that I never even think about when I scroll.

Social media is vital to any starting business, and I get to see that firsthand working at an independently-owned coffee shop. People come in all the time saying they saw posts about us or that we popped up on their explore pages; social media is part of the reason we do so well. Not only is that how people find us but that’s how we let people know our hours, or if we have seasonal treats. Social media really is a game changer and has weaved its way into every crevice of our life.