They are everywhere: in Trotro, in Taxis, on the streets, in supermarkets, at home. On our mobile phones they always accompany us, no matter where we go. Everybody knows them, everybody uses them: the social media.
Facebook for example is a very famous platform with more than 2 billion users worldwide. The platform makes it possible, that all these people could theoretical connect with each other. And that is what it is mainly about: connecting and keeping in touch with other people. Intercultural exchange is promoted in this way. Nowadays you are not dependent on having only friends in your homeland. You can communicate with the whole world.
Moreover Facebook offers the possibility organising easily events and meetings. In addition to smaller parties and events, political demonstrations with thousands of participants can develop.
Besides Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are gaining popularity at the moment. Young people all over the world, also in Ghana are primarily using them. They are sharing their whole lives on those platforms.
Photos, especially selfies are posted, so that everybody can see, what they are currently doing.
On the one hand this causes a feeling of closer relation with the other people but on the other hand trouble can increase because of publishing posts and pictures not liked by your friends or even hurting your friends.
The negative sides of Social Media
People spend much time with social media; they are a leisure activity, which occupies us sometimes too much. The social media put us in another world and isolate us from the Reality. Perhaps you once have tried to talk with someone looking on his smartphone. Usually you have to wait for your answer a longer time. But why do we actually do that? From an objective point, it does not make any sense to talk to a person who is not present while you are meeting another person. Some people perceive this behaviour as rude.
Another very important aspect is the feeling of self-worth. We begin to compare ourselves to others. Who has the most beautiful profile pictures? Who has the most likes? Who has the most friends on Facebook? The continual comparison debilitates our feeling of self-worth and can make us sick. However our lust for life should not depend from the number of likes under our Instagram picture.
Disability in the professional career and Cyber-Mobbing
Additionally, Social Media can have negative influence on our professional career. Some employers search you in the internet, on Facebook before reading your application and then it can happen that you are prematurely sorted out only because of posts presenting you in a wrong light. But on the other hand we should not fail to mention that many people find new jobs through the social media. It opens many new possibilities for both employers and workers.
With regard to our children and teenagers, Social Media can also cause problems. They are very susceptible for the wonderful world of social media. They spend much time on chatting with others and forget the time, so their homework is neglected. Furthermore “Cyber-Mobbing”, the Mobbing of people, especially teenagers through platforms like Facebook is a problem. This kind of mobbing is for the offender very easy, because he can remain anonymous. The victims suffer, because they cannot defend themselves.
Finally, it can be concluded, that social media have both, many advantages making our lives easier, but also disadvantages which contain dangers. In any case the social media influence our lives in many different ways. But one thing is clear, they are not going to leave us, so everybody has to find his own best way to deal with them.