Social media is good if it is used in the right ways

Staff Editorial

Social media is a quick way to find out what is going on in the world and communicate with people.

Millions and millions of Americans have at least one social media account, so it seems pretty safe to say social media—at least to an extent—shapes our world and the way we see it.

Many people immediately turn to social media when they are looking for information about something they heard happened.

However, there is a great risk with relying on social media to find information.

No teacher would ever accept a Facebook status as a source for an assignment, so why would you use that information to shape your worldview without doing more research?

It does not serve you well to take everything seen on social media as truth. Rather, it is better to approach news and information shared on social media with an attitude of skepticism.

If a news link is from a recognizable, reputable source, then it is probably legitimate. But if there is a question, the veracity of information can often be verified by a fact-checking website such as Snopes.

As long as the social media user is checking facts, it is a great tool to use to find out what is going on in the world.

Social media also does a good job at entertaining the people who visit it, whether that be by scrolling through newsfeeds, playing games or chatting with friends.

One minute, we may be checking a notification on Facebook, and twenty minutes later we’re looking at videos of talking animals. With the ability of social media to pass time, it is important to be mindful of the time we spend on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat or whatever it may be, given our obligations to our classes and our extracurricular activities.

But, if social media is used moderately and users know their limits, then it serves as a nice stress reliever or break between assignments.

Overall, social media can entertain, and it can inform. It allows its users to have long-distance support, stay connected with friends or even make new ones from the comfort of their bedrooms. Social media can help people make business connections or find jobs. It can help organizations plan meetings or events. It can be used to bring about social change.

There is a potential for misuse, but that doesn’t make social media bad. It is just important to remember to fact check information, not overuse social media, watch what you post or send and take relationships seriously regardless of whether there’s a screen separating you.