Society & Culture

Social Media vs. Social Interaction

Society & Culture

Posted by: TaylorCS

14th Dec 2020 11:05am

In 2018, research revealed social media is most effective in tackling loneliness when it is used to enhance existing relationships, or forge new meaningful connections. On the other hand, it is counterproductive if used as a substitute for real-life social interaction.

In what ways do you think social media is good at keeping you connected? And when does it become detrimental to your real-life interactions and in turn likely to make you feel more isolated?

Do you have any examples that come to mind?

Comments 39

  • 21st Jan 2021 10:32pm

In my opinion social media is good for anything long distance, whether it be friendship, a romantic relationship or a professional relationship. There are many companies that rely on social media (whether it be Facebook, slack, or something else) to communicate when it is impossible to do so face to face.
However, when it comes to the effect social media has on real life interactions, it can be detrimental, whether it be as sime as making people lose their social connections, or something more sinister. When I was I high school I was made aware of multiple kids at my school (mostly between 12 and 15), commit suicide due to cyber bullying which without social media, would not have occurred.

  • 5th Jan 2021 12:32am

I think social interaction is really good for fresh mind with fresh ideas you can instantly get answers or views on topics and you feel happy while talking and meeting people whereas social media does not provide that feel but still a good way to communicate with large audience so we really need a balance between these two.

  • 2nd Jan 2021 08:49am

I think that social media is good at keeping people connected who do not live in the same city. Social media is now such a big part of our lives that we are expected to use it and I think that people that don't feel more isolated. A good example is my 73 year old Father who does not have the internet or a mobile phone, so when we have a local emergency he has to rely on the radio or tv to receive information.

Bubbles McTavish
  • 31st Dec 2020 09:48am

Social media allows me to keep in contact with family and friends overseas. It can prey on the lonely however, as my brother who lives in another State alone, has now become enmeshed in a cult. Because of COVID, I can't get to him and he can't come to me, so it's worrying. Social media, however, has also allowed me to keep up relationships with people I can't visit.

  • 27th Dec 2020 02:26am

i find social media too fake
i dont really use it, i have but found it fake and drama filled, everything overblown

  • 22nd Dec 2020 07:59pm

As someone who suffers from social anxiety I have always preferred social media as a way of communicating with others. It has been especially helpful for everyone during this difficult situation as we can catch up with friends and family in a safe way. I do think that real life interaction is important for our well being and I can understand why people can feel isolated while using social media.

  • 21st Dec 2020 11:31am

I use Facebook as my way of staying in touch with family and friends. I have family overseas and this is a great way to stay in touch and see what is happening in their lives on a day to day basis.
Facebook has also connected me with new online friends overseas. I guess this is the modern day equivalent of pen pals. One of these friends was making plans to come visit and stay with me pre covid.

Speaking of covid, Facebook was a great way to stay connected with others during times of lockdown.
I think social media would become detrimental to real life if a person felt their online interactions were more important than being able to catch up with people in various settings in real life.

I much prefer going to the community group meetings I am involved with in person than over Zoom. (Which is what happened during Covid lockdown) I just could not gel with the online meetings, finding the face to face ones a lot more interactive and lively.

  • 21st Dec 2020 12:39am

It is good to an extent, however, it becomes detrimental when you rely too heavily on social media as a form of interaction and gratification.

  • 20th Dec 2020 09:28pm

Like anything in life, moderation when using social media is essential - it is a great way to communicate with others about similar relevant intereesting things, especially with those who live far away ... but nothing beats face to face conversation, where you can look a person in the eye and communicate properly.

  • 20th Dec 2020 07:41pm

It is a good way of organizing events but is detrimental in that it makes you think you have more good friends than you actually really have! This increases your isolation when you realize that these friends are in name only and are not true "physical" friends!

  • 18th Dec 2020 07:39pm

I much prefer personal interaction and know it keeps me mentally more healthy. Social media can be every isolating for many people - it is for me. I do however, have family and friends overseas and interstate and it has proved to be handy to use during Covid-19 when travel and personal interaction became less impossible. Each way has benefits like contact in times of isolation - and downsides like bullying, stalking and living in a fantasy world of 'unreal friends' you don't truly know, just imagine you do.

  • 18th Dec 2020 05:20pm

It's a bit of a love/hate relationship - it's so convenient and enjoyable to be able to reach family or friends, especially at a long distance, within a short space of time, post photos or talk and view them on screen; however, of course it's no substitute for 'in the flesh' meetings and greetings - hugging a loved one beats hugging a screen, any time! I think the Internet is a great invention and I love most of all it offers; however I find that although social media definitely helps to alleviate loneliness, if there isn't a balance between using it and attending real-life social events/meeting people, it can create a rather black and depressing void in one's life, and can certainly end up causing isolation, without the user hardly noticing it. I personally have spent hours in long discussions with people on fascinating subjects only to then find I've wasted actually days, not 'just a few hours' getting nothing else done - especially needed housework! I think the healthiest solution is ensuring a balance of both kinds of interaction, and also setting some time management boundaries when online.

  • 18th Dec 2020 02:19pm

Social media is a good place to look to find long lost friends and reconnect with them.
Its also great to be part of special interest groups to find out what's happening in your local area or grou

  • 18th Dec 2020 01:50pm

Social media is great to keep you connected to family and friends, particularly if they are located some distance away from your location. The ease with which social media allows sharing of photos, for example, birth of a new baby, milestone birthdays is great for keeping your friendships going and staying in touch. However, there are some ways in which I can see that social media might be detrimental to face-to-face interactions, and, more importantly to one's mental health. For example, sometimes people over share some of their activities. If you are not experiencing many activities that you believe are 'worth sharing', seeing others posting photos and comments on a daily or even an hourly basis can be overwhelming and depressing. I know that some people like to share more than others. It is important to remember some people like to share many details about their lives. Others don't share as much. Individuals need to remember that sharing stuff is 'personal'. If you are not sharing heaps of stuff it does not mean you are not a 'worthwhile' or interesting person. However, if you are feeling a bit down, for whatever reason, I think looking at social media does little to 'give you a boost'. Sometimes people make off hand comments on social media, and others make rather 'heavy' remarks about how bad they are feeling. These comments can be upsetting for others. I guess it gets down to the way we choose to use social media. Perhaps we all need to remember to try and be kind, in both our online and face to face interactions. If COVID has taught us something, it is the value of face to face interaction with friends and family.

  • 18th Dec 2020 12:27pm

Social media has been my savour during covid it has allowed me to stay in touch and connect with the most important friends and family members in my life that I was unable to see in person it has also helped to keep me entertained and relieve my boredom during those days stuck at home during the lockdown and self isolation periods I had to undertake I think social media can be a wonderful thing if used right

  • 18th Dec 2020 09:07am

I can understand how the younger folks get depressed if they dont get heaps of "friends" or likes to their posts. I have a small group of friends but a lot of extended family, I put up news and funny items I think may be of interest to them. Likes? maybe one, in twenty of the posts I put up. It is a way of keeping in touch for me or so I thought. It would seem by the lack of interest I get that I am not important in my friends or family members lives. While this is upsetting, I have to move on and just do what I think is ok. I will just smile and let the crazy world pass on by.

  • 17th Dec 2020 11:59pm

Social interaction is good meeting real people, getting to know them, social media, hiding, saying things that are just lies, nothing enhances life like meeting people, the anti-social media breeds the hatreds of the small minded

. V
  • 17th Dec 2020 08:24pm

The one reason I like social media is that it keeps me connected to the animal rescues I like to help out and follow. I love animals and social media connects me to other like minded people. I also have found old friends and relatives that I now keep in contact with that would be hard otherwise.

I have noticed lately that if someone doesn't agree with something you post they will block you and not tell you. I find there is more conflct online but not sure if that is really making people feel isolated.

I don't personally feel isolated online. Don't really care if I don't have many friends online, some of my friends have 1000 more friends but seriously who has that many friends in real life. I am actually about to unfriend people that I have friended over the years as I never interact with them online or in person.

  • 17th Dec 2020 06:31pm

Social media can never replace being in contact with anyone, but for me it helps me keep in touch with family who live all around the world. During lockdown it helped to keep me sane,as living in Melbourne, we had the longest lockdown of all. So thank goodness for social media.

  • 17th Dec 2020 06:30pm

Social media can never replace being in contact with anyone, but for me it helps me keep in touch with family who live all around the world. During lockdown it helped to keep me sane,as living in Melbourne, we had the longest lockdown of all. So thank goodness for social media.

  • 17th Dec 2020 06:15pm

I find social media helps, when it come to issues, that require petitions to be signed, also keeps you some what updated on what is going on in the world. But a lot of it is rubbish, its just knowing what is true and what is not.

  • 17th Dec 2020 06:05pm

Social media is an excellent to educate people what is bad and what is good. We can learn many good things when we contact with social media friends in various subject, there by both can exchange our views and get to know many interesting points in our day to day life. These type of INTERACTONS incredible.

  • 17th Dec 2020 05:38pm

Social media is a great tool when you (for example me) live across the globe from your family and friends. And the only contact you have is through Facebook, Instagram and equivalents..
For this instance it's amazing.
But when you are face to face with people, social media (and your phone, I might say) is disruptive and can damage any interaction. People don't talk to each other anymore, they see posts & photos. And imagine a relationship with one another.

  • 17th Dec 2020 04:28pm

During this covid time I enjoy using my email, instagram, youtube channel platforms as form of interacting with friends, I can access social media and have been able to interact with friends/ family which has been helpful boosting mood and sense of wellbeing. It also acts as a distraction and a useful tool to pass the time not to mention being a source of news and information. It has served me as a creative outlet and a means of self-expression other than contact in the physical form.
There are negative sides for some but its all about how you use it, anyhow I think it's going to be a while before the psychological and emotional impact of covid is fully understood but I hope to emerge as a better, more resilient person.

  • 17th Dec 2020 04:16pm

Social media is fun to keep up with what is happening with my extended family, who live a fair distance away. I also recently caught up with some of my old high school friends from the late 50's early 60's. In that regard it has been well worth while.

  • 17th Dec 2020 03:56pm

I just use it to keep in touch with my friends and share

  • 17th Dec 2020 03:45pm

I do love social media where I purely use it for information purposes. I may follow others. Don't allow strangers on my public profiles. I have gained a lot of things because of positive social interaction flowing on the internet mediums like pin interst, Facebook groups etc.

  • 17th Dec 2020 03:41pm

I do not use social media - it's invasive and you risk loosing your privacy. Social interaction it the way to go - talking to real people in person. You can't gauge body language with social media on the internet

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:41pm

Social media works when such events as forced isolation occur. You can still keep in touch and communicate with friends and family. But there's nothing that beats a hug in person.

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:34pm

My view of social media is fairly straightforward. I call it UNSOCIAL media.

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:25pm

It may become detrimental if people just choose to interact via social media and not in person. I have seen even family members who have thousands of friends on social media but in real life very few. They choose to chat instead of catching up which can lead to depression. One of my family member got really depressed because of topics she posted and received a lot of abuse. She was actually quite affected by it to the point she was scared to log in to her social media to avoid all the negative comments.

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:23pm

Social media is good to keep me connected to my family and friends all over the world. I get to see what they are up to and the other way around without missing important events like birthdays, christenings, weddings etc. Without social media I would not see it and would feel like I miss out. Especially because I would not be able to travel to all of them. It is also good to do video chat to them and we can see life what each other is up to. My grandma is is Romania and she loves to see my new born son who is now 7.5 months. Photos are good but in the video she gets to smile and talk to h

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:16pm

Social Media has been great at reuniting family overseas but I find the hardest part is people you mix go out for a day trip and post all the beautiful pics and that can depress you, because, while I am happy for them I cant do that because of the loss of one leg. The other part is getting to know someone is always better in person.

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:12pm

Social media is good in a way that can help us keep connected with our family and friends, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Since I am an immigrant myself, it has been playing a great role to keep in touch with my friends in my home country. I can check what they are up to on social media and send a message whenever I want and wherever I am.
However, it is not all about good. We tend to spend a lot of time on social media instead of actually interacting with people in person. For instance, it is not uncommon that friends or couples sit together at a table in a cafe or restaurant and they are all looking at their mobile phones, or they sit next to each other on a bus or train and they are spending time on social media instead of having a chat. This aspect of social media makes me feel more isolated and miss human interactions.
Therefore, social media does have two sides by its nature.

  • 17th Dec 2020 02:04pm

I understand the importance of social media but unfortunately it is not for me. I have been without Facebook for 8.5 years and instagram for 2.5 years. My mental health is much better without social media and i love to go out and interact with people face to face. Over COVID this has been hard but i have increased phone calls during this time to keep in contact with friends and family.

  • 17th Dec 2020 01:46pm

Nothing is better than a catch up with friends over lunch or a cup of tea.

  • 17th Dec 2020 01:23pm

Social media is a great way to communicate with people around the world, get their opinions and views on different topics. It helps to maintain your personal relationships, even with people who are far away from you. Social media becomes a norm now in our hectic lives. Every morning I check my phone first before I say good morning to my loved ones, this is the sad reality we are all experiencing. Social media sometimes can isolate you from real world. People now can travel "virtually" rather than in real time. That makes them becoming more isolated from the real true world, people refuse to spend money and get addicted "travelling in space" on their digital devices. Covid made us all isolated, I missed my friends and family, social media didn't help to cope with this and my days were filled with pretty much just sad news from TV. I hope 2021 will be a better year and we will leave our devices home, hop on a plane or train and enjoy the beauty of this world.

  • 17th Dec 2020 12:17pm

As a deaf person. I don't. Social Interact as much with people I hope to remedy that situation. Next year. When I get a Cochlear device. I paint for. My mental health but have wanted to. Meet other. Like-minded people. Being hearing impaired.has impinged on my social activities. I found many people do not tolerate. Disabled people as well as you would. Like. Social media. Has especially this year. With covid it allowed me to stay in contact. With family. And friends. It has been good. To. Stop isolation but. I love interacting. With others. And have missed it. Over the years. I think social media. Can. Allow people to hide their true nature with anonymity. Man needs. Physical. Interactions socially especially for mental theory. To talk touch. Etc. Although I am home. Quite a lot. I do love to go out. My daughter. Helps me there. We. Go out for a meal regularly. So I can get used to public situations. I love to share my paintings. For others to see. So social media. Like Instagram and Facebook. Are a godsend. I really do think that both social media and social interaction. Is important for our mental health. Each has its own. Benefits. And. I love. To be round people. And have missed it. Immensely. Looking forward to. Hearing and speaking to people. Like. Most people do.

  • 17th Dec 2020 12:17pm

Social media has its place & when used properly. It's kept us able to be in contact during covid restrictions & sane.

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