The Age of Addiction

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The Age of Addiction

Addiction is the repeated involvement with a substance or activity, despite the substantial harm it now causes, because that involvement was (and may continue to be) pleasurable and/or valuable.

29 percent of young adults 18-24 consider themselves “addicted” to social media. In 2017, 29 percent of young adults spent 3 to 5 hours a day on social media and 9 percent 5 to 10 hours. When first analyzing this data, I was shocked that young adults could possibly consume such high amounts of media in one day. That’s approximately 30-35 hours a week spent on social media. With these statistics in mind, I spent the last week observing the young adults within my environment to further increase my understanding of these numbers. On my walk to class, out of the 200 kids I passed approximately 97% of them had a phone glued to their face. Whether in a restaurant, library, or school event, thousands of phones and screens were flooded with Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Youtube. 

The FOMO (fear of missing out) is at an all time high among 18-24 year olds. 34 percent of young adults say they are afraid to miss out on things if they do not use social media. Along with this, 37 percent consider no Internet access extremely unpleasant. 

While some view social media as a positive platform to connect with friends, families, and brands, others have a more negative approach to these platforms. In fact, 40.6% of people were negatively impacted by social media usage.

With all of these statistics in mind, I believe social media is not at fault for negligence, but the consumer at large may be the issue. As an adult, we should have the ability to use these sites as a means of encouragement, better understanding of others, as well as a small form of entertainment. We should avoid over usage which ultimately leads to negative experiences as well as real-world issues such as relationship problems, inability to sleep, as well as lack of communicative skills.

 


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