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 has become 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 post 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 is where a lot of people thrive on posting pictures and videos, but with that comes rude comments talking about people’s bodies, disabilities or even how they dress. I have seen many nasty things written on people’s Instagram pictures just for posting how they feel. Another issue would be photoshop.  Photoshopping people and photos creates problems for young children when it comes to creating a positive self-esteem.


Snapchat is not nearly as overt as Instagram or TikTok. The only things users can really post are short little snippet stories, which are still technically a way for people to judge other people, but they are not able to leave comments. I only take issue with the feature that allows locations to be displayed for anyone to see. Snapchat users automatically display his or her current location for everyone to see unless disabled. It’s not safe for anyone to know exactly where a person is at especially if they are of harm to the person in any way.


TikTok, another social media app, allows users to post short videos for others to view about his or her everyday life experiences. Sometimes when I’m watching a video, I will cruise to the comments just to make sure that someone is not being made fun of on the post. There’s always that one person or group of people who just have to write a degrading, racist or sexist remark. This can make people feel very insecure about themselves with their physical appearance, skin color, etc.


Social media in my opinion should be a place where people can express themselves freely without being judged. There are many people on social media who have inspired others because they have been made fun of for how they look, they know how it feels and they provide hope for people that in the future life gets better. That’s what social media should be about: people supporting others not tearing them down.


Some might say that social media is a great thing 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 they have never met before. Someone in the state of Georgia could post a selfie, and someone in North Dakota could post a terrible comment just about how they look, and that’s the very sad truth about social media.


There are a couple solutions that could further prevent nasty comments from being written. I would say that people who run social media networks need to have monitors watching comments. There should be a message that pops up every time someone posts a comment that says, “Is this a positive comment?” Parents should check a child’s cell phones to make sure that he or she did not post or comment on something that might become regretted later on in life. Also, parents or guardians should remind kids that if it’s not something nice that’s being said, 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.