Nowadays more people prefer to socialize online rather than face to face. Is this a positive or negative development?
People are glued to their cellphones and tablets. They are constantly updating their status on social networks and checking out the photos and videos uploaded by their virtual friends. In fact, most of us now have more friends online than in the real world. In my opinion, this is a negative development that can have far reaching consequences.
Excessive online socialization can lead to depression, isolation and behavioural problems. The internet is a great platform to share views and opinions, but it also fuels unhealthy competition among people. Studies have shown that people develop an inferiority complex when their friends get more comments or likes than them.
Social media has many negative sides. There is no guarantee that the people we meet online are actually real. Many of them create fake profiles with the objective of cheating naïve users. There have been several instances of teenagers committing suicide after they got cheated by their online friends. Most people who are addicted to online socialisation have hardly any time for talking to their family members or neighbours. This affects family relationships. Also, it can cause the individual to become isolated from his community.
Face to face communications, on the other hand, lead to the development of trustworthy relationships that last long. Meeting a friend or a dear one over a coffee or in a park is always a memorable experience. Social media friendships lack that warmth. Also, we cannot expect our online friends living in another part of the globe to help us when we are in trouble.
To conclude, it is not hard to see that excessive online socialization is bad. It affects our relationships. It is true that the internet has enriched our lives in many ways, but if we are addicted to it, we will develop many problems. After all, the virtual world cannot replace the real world; neither can virtual friends the real ones.