Social Media: Safe or Saddening?     


Anja H. , Staff Writer

     Homicide is no longer the leading cause of teen death. Suicide that has been linked to social media has jumped 45% from 2011. Social media, or the act of posting media on a public platform has been a way many of the so called “Gen Z’ers” and millennials have communicated with their peers. Due to these heartbreaking statistics, however,  many parents, educators and even students themselves have questioned the safety of this trend. Could it harm our students and cause irreparable damage to them, mentally and physically?

Some of the students that use social media have decided to share their thoughts on the popular communication method. Elizabeth Thomason, a 7th grader relayed that she has an Instagram and uses it often. When asked to share a pro or con, she says “A pro is that it [Instagram] is entertaining, while a con is that, you can’t control what other people do on it, so some have a tendency to be inappropriate. Thomason’s perspective makes it clear that social media is a 2 way street and her statements convey the anonymity of some of the users on some sites.  That said, there are some students at Roosevelt Middle School that say social media is completely wonderful, like Andrew Zavalkoff who uses Instagram and when asked about the rise of harmful behavior due to social media, says he“thinks it’s not surprising, but he doesn’t ever think that would happen to us.”[Roosevelt students] Zavalkoff thought exemplifies the safe—I—only—follow—my—friends philosophy so social media is great.

To always be safe, please remember everything that you put on the internet can stay there forever and those posts help or hurt other people.  Please look at these sites with a trusted adult and use with caution.