Addicted to Social Networks?
Are social networks consuming your real one to one quality time your with family and friends? It’s simply amazing just how many social networking sites that exist right now. I have been doing some research to see just how much time people spend time on these social networks and the statistics simply astound me.
According to figures from In-Stat in 2011, there are now more social-networking accounts than there are people in the world! The market analyst reports that there were; 10 billion social-networking and online-world accounts in 2010 and that 4.5 billion of these are active.
These figures include accounts set up for online role-playing games such as World of Warcraft, as well as social networks such as Facebook and Twitter and online dating sites.
Americans spend almost a quarter of their time online on social networking sites, says a recent Nielsen report. According to that report Internet users spend more than twice as much time on social networks (including blogs) as they do on online games, the next top web destination by time. 25% is a phenomenal amount of time, when you consider that working and career time reportedly devours 1/3 of your life and sleeping for the average person consumes 36% of your lifetime.
With the increasing prevalence of mobile devices, easy access to social networks and games is also helping to contribute to spending so time online.
Are Social Networks Replacing Your Real Human Connections?
This is a question that I often think about, especially when I see the staggering statistics of people and the time they spend on social networks. So I wonder just how much time we spend actually talking face to face with our families and friends.
I am certainly aware of the importance of networking and advertising a business with these social networks, but I can’t help but wonder just how many of us are addicted to facebook, twitter and other popular networking and social sites.
There are two instances that happened in my life that I found to be quite alarming with people and their interaction to social networks.
I used to love Facebook at first because I got to reconnect with people and friends that I had lost touch with, and it also gave me the opportunity to communicate with some long lost relatives. But then I began to see some disturbing trends when I logged in at my usual time early in the morning, before work.
I noticed that people were creating posts about every single activity that occurred in their day, every facebook game they played, where they planned to go and every other detail of their daily routines. Some people made 20-30 posts a day/night. I have to say the absolute shocker for me was watching in astonishment as certain people had major disagreements with one another online or posted very private family information, and witnessing husband and wives living in the same house communicating with one another through facebook! I also noticed how the backgrounds and education of people that I knew well seem to change dramatically on facebook profiles. Embellishment is an understatement.
Maybe it’s just my opinion, but there is something that resonates with me that this is so wrong. What has happened to calling a friend or family member on the phone, or visiting in person with them to share and communicate news, instead of posting this on a social network visible to multitudes of people who could care less? Are we losing real human connection and interaction through these social networks? I believe we are.
The second incident that left me dumbfounded was an invitation that I received from a “friend” who invited me over for lunch and an afternoon of “girl talk.” I arrived that day with anticipation of having a wonderful day spending time with a friend. I arrived at her door and she welcomed me in. After a few minutes of catch up, I noticed her laptop was sitting on the table open to facebook and another social network site. After about 20 minutes, she began posting everything we were doing, on the social networks! She even got into private messaging with several people, while I was there. I can’t tell you the awful feeling that gave me. It became clearly apparent that she could not socialize one to one-she needed to be connected to her social networks!
Her laptop became an unwelcome guest in my day and needless to say, I left much earlier than I had planned. I realized that she was truly addicted to a technology connection over real human interaction and I found that quite disturbing.
Social Networks May Be Adversely Affecting Your Relationships
Are you are spending more time with your online “friends” than your own family, and seeing deterioration in your relationships? If you wonder why you are drifting apart from your close friends or loved ones, then you need to seriously look at how much time you spend on these social networks.
Relationships are difficult enough to manage, but when you allow social networks to take away that time that you spend with the people who mean the most to you, you need to make some serious adjustments in your life. Stop allowing social networks to steal valuable time in your life and negatively affect relationships. Social networking sites are a poor alternative to real-world socialising and family time.
The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have passed at home in the bosom of my family. Thomas Jefferson
Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of great advantages to social networking and that includes; getting business exposure, learning new things, building new relationships, interacting with customers, and finding entertainment. But ask yourself this, what matters most to me; the people who really care about me or my connections on social networks?”