Why I love social media

Why I love social mediaI have been chatting about social media this month – the good, the bad and the ugly. And I wanted to finish on a high note. I love social media. I love how it democratises information. How it has created universally accessible platforms for expression and connection. How it allows like-minded people to become friends.How it brings the previously inaccessible closer. Sure, there is the trolling, the judgemental comments, the bullying and the invasion of privacy, but there are so many lighter sides to the darker underbelly.

Here are the reasons I love social media: 

  1. There are things in life that can make you feel acutely isolated. Experiences that you are not sure anyone around you understands. Social media offers connections to those that are going through the same thing. People that you might never have met otherwise, offering comfort, guidance and understanding because they have either been there or are going through it.
  2. The nightly news and the local rag offer a very limited view of the world. Social media opens up the channels of information. I can access views and opinions over a broad range of issues, not just what local media owners want me to see.  And when news first breaks, I am more likely to learn about via social media than the radio, paper or television.
  3. There are amazing communities on-line. Inspiring, beautiful people who have become a part of my every day. On-line friends that I have never met in person, and may never meet in person, but enrich my life.
  4. I love how accessible it is. I love how it has allowed small businesses to thrive. How creative people have been able to use social media to showcase their work to the kind of audience they never would have had without it. Yes, it has become harder as social networks have monetised, but getting in front of thousands and thousands of people with your work as an indie artist prior to social media would have nearly impossible.
  5. It has given those who traditionally didn’t have a voice a megaphone. Social Media is the ultimate example of people power. It connects those with common concerns. It can mobilise action. It can unite the disenfranchised. It can turn a minority into a force.

Arrow 2

Someone once asked Reddit if someone arrived from 50 years in the past, what thing would you have the hardest time explaining?

I like this answer best: I possess a device, in my pocket, that is capable of accessing the entirety of information known to man. I use it to look at videos of cats and get in arguments with strangers.

Sometimes I feel that way about social media as well – we have this incredible, powerful tool that is often dismissed as trite or a waste of time. Carly Findlay wrote an excellent post about just this thing. I don’t think we have even come close to realising social media’s potential.

What do you love or hate about social media?

 

26 thoughts on “Why I love social media

  1. Reannon @shewhorambles says:

    I love & hate social media equally. Actually right now I maybe hate it more.

    Love that its bought new people into my life & helps me feel connected when I am lonely or alone. I love that it’s given me a little place to express myself & clear my head. I love that there is so much inspiration right at my finger tips.

    Hate the bullshit of it all. I don’t like the perfection that is portrayed as normal or the one-upmanship that goes on. Funnily enough it can also make me alone because I suffer a bit from FOMO so seeing everyone doing all this fun, fab stuff while I’m at home vacuuming up crackers & dealing with un-fun kids.

    • Robyna says:

      The perfection as normal thing is tough for me too (particularly neat and beautiful houses!). But I know I probably add to it as well with some of my posts and pics. Behind every cute pic, there is a not so cute story I reckon. Because the moments I truly treasure with my kids, I am having too much fun to think about taking a photo.

  2. Sandra Kelly says:

    “It can unite the disenfranchised.” I love this thought Robyna! I have a love hate relationship with social media. I love the conneections I have made through it but hate that it can be used for evil. Xx

    • Robyna says:

      It is a love/hate thing isn’t it? I just see all the good it could potentially do and then it gets used for horrible or trivial things – such a waste!

  3. Cat from thatbettiething says:

    Here’s to lovely communities and I’m appreciative that I’ve got to know you through ours! I must admit, I don’t use social media at all for personal use (I’m stuck in the dark ages yes) but I’m looking forward to learning more about it and how I can use it with my blog. Thanks for putting a positive spin on it! X

    • Robyna says:

      Like all things – It has a light and a darks side, but we must use the force for good (sorry, there was a little bit of star wars play at our house this morning)

  4. Flat Bum Mum says:

    Robyna, I have to say I feel much the same as you. I love and loathe social media. It can be a real downer if you let it or a really positive place. I guess its up to us how we choose to use it. Such a fab post. I love your writing. It’s so fresh and honest. Thanks for linking up with me. Bron x

  5. Zoe | A Quirky Bird says:

    I love Social Media for the connections and amazing people I am meeting and the creativity.

    I don’t like the nasty elements, those that bullying. I read a friends post this morning and she wrote about being bullied online recently.

    I loathe and love the perfection. t times it makes me feel dissatisfied with my lot. At other times it gives me incentive to get going. Zoe xx

  6. Mumma McD says:

    Great post! I love social media for the interactivity of it, being able to engage with people from all walks of life. I also love that it can be a great leveller, sharing the power (i.e. knowledge) across the masses. But while it can make people feel connected on one hand, it can also increase the sense of isolation for others – it’s a double edged sword.

    • Robyna says:

      Definitely a double edged sword. I love it when I get to meet people I have initially met online in RL – that’s when it’s amazing – when SM is just part of a friendship but not the only thing.

  7. Sara | Kid Magazine says:

    For someone who works from home it is an amazing tool for feeling connected. However I wish more people would remember the old saying “if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all”. I love how social media exposes us to different opinions and ideas but not how people can be attacked for their opinions!

  8. Rachel Stewart says:

    I love social media, it’s funny how people think social media = anti-social. I’m a bit shy and I feel like social media has kind of taught me to be more open. People are so much more honest and vulnerable online. It’s funny how things you wouldn’t say face to face, on a one to one conversation is easier to put in writing for a wider audience to read. It is a time waster and sleep eater sometimes though…aaaannnddddd I do sometimes get in arguments with strangers. When someone says stuff like “I support breastfeeding but once they have teeth get them off your boob!” I’m like “thems be fighting words” (not really… maybe… only a little bit…)

    • Robyna says:

      Yes, I don’t understand that either – why people find they can say things online that they would never utter in real life. Those would be fighting words for me too 🙂

  9. hugzillablog says:

    It’s totally a love/hate thing! Social media brings out the best in people, but it also brings out the worst in people. It’s why I’m really careful about what pages I subscribe to and what kind of people I have on my friends list. They are all pretty awesome, for the record – so I tend to be a bit sheltered in terms of the stupid, bigoted, petty, hateful dialogues that can take place online. Unless I read the FB comments on articles. NEVER. READ. COMMENTS.

    • Robyna says:

      I am a bit the same – I don’t see a whole bunch of negative because I am careful about what I read. I think you can definitely avoid it if you want to.

  10. Raylene Barton says:

    I actually love it for all of your reasons. I and have found support when I needed it recently after my duaghter was born and diagnosed with Down Syndrome. I try and ignore the negativity these days 🙂

    • Robyna says:

      A dear high school friend found the same thing when she had her little daughter, who also has Down Syndrome. There is so much good it can do and support it can give.

  11. thelilawolff says:

    I mostly love social media, I equally love the excessively styled perfect instagram feeds and the raw real ones. I don’t love that it seems to be becoming intensely cliquey and a reminder of even more places that I don’t “fit”

    • Robyna says:

      Well, you are always welcome here. I think your work and your blog are amazingly beautiful – and unique. I haven’t noticed too much cliquey stuff – but I tend to walk around with my rose coloured blinkers on.

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