Social Media: A dangerous space


Brandon R. Lyle

Ding! Ding! Social media has turned the world into a place where people cannot even feel safe in their own skin.

People use social media for numerous purposes: some use it to make money to support families, some use it to see how many “likes” a picture can get and some use it to stay in touch with their friends; even though social media turned into a platform that’s used on a daily basis, it can be a very dangerous place.


I currently have Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok, but I don’t really use the three of them that often. The only social media account I use every day would be Snapchat in order to text my friends, and that’s about all. I feel like social media developed into a constant, competitive game. For some people, it’s all about how many views they can get on a story or how many likes a picture receives. It can get stressful to some people because they know that there will always be someone out there that will be more popular than they are in life.


Instagram makes a living allowing users to post pictures and videos. With that feature though, comes the negative ability for people to make rude comments talking about physical appearances, disabilities or even how users dress. I have seen many nasty things written on people’s Instagram pictures just for posting how they feel. Another issue with the app is users have photos edited. Photoshopping people and photos creates problems for young children when it comes to creating self-esteem.


The Snapchat app remains not nearly as overt as Instagram or TikTok. The only issue with the app would be that users can post short, little snippet stories, which technically provide a way for people to judge others. However, viewers are only able to leave comments to the person who created the post, the comments do not remain viewable for the public. I only take issue with the feature that allows users locations to be shown for anyone on the app to discover. Snapchat users automatically agree to display his or her current location unless disabled. It’s not safe for anyone to know exactly where an individual may be at any given time, especially if they do not know the person.

TikTok is another social media app where people can post videos listening to songs or videos about their everyday lives. Sometimes when I’m watching a video, I will cruise to the comments just to make sure that someone’s not being made fun of online. There’s always that one person or group of people who just have to write a degrading, racist or sexist remark. These acts can make people feel very insecure about their physical appearances, skin color, etc.


In my opinion, social media should be a platform of free expression without judgement. There are many people on social media who have inspired other people because they have been made fun of for how they look, they know how it feels and these stories inspire people who can relate by providing hope that they will get through these trying times and the future will become better. That’s what social media should be about: people supporting other people not tearing them down.


Some might argue that social media is a great platform to have and that everything in the world has its ups and downs. On the other hand, it does not make sense for people to judge others that they have never met before. Someone in the state of Georgia could post a selfie, and then, someone in North Dakota could post a terrible comment just about how the person looks, which points out the very sad truth about social media.

I propose a couple solutions that could further prevent nasty comments from becoming posted or expressed. I would say that people who run the social media networks need to have monitors or monitoring software that analyzes comments. In addition, a message should pop up every time someone posts a comment that says, “Is this a positive comment?”  Furthermore, parents should check children’s cell phones to make sure that they’re not going to write or say something that might become regretted later on in life. Also, parents could remind kids that if it’s not something nice that will be commented, then don’t say anything at all.


Social media needs to provide a safe place for people to show how they feel without being criticized for unnecessary things. It’s time for people to be a part of the change.