Over the past decade, the Internet has permanently changed the way that the average person communicates with loved ones, friends and colleagues. Some of these changes are positive. People who live abroad can keep in touch with their families, for instance, and people with irregular hours can use websites like Facebook to avoid missing out on conversations with their friends.
However, social media may have a dark side. Education website Schools.com and social website Badoo recently compiled research to create an infographic that shows some of the ways that social media changes the ways that we interact and how we’ve created a distressingly strong connection with websites like Facebook.
For instance, research shows that worldwide Facebook users as a whole log about 19,963 years on the website every day. That doesn’t count mobile users, who log an average of 441 minutes on the website per month in the United States alone.
Overall, 39 percent of Americans spend more time socializing online than in face-to-face interactions. 24 percent of survey respondents said that they had missed a major life event because they were too busy trying to document it for a social media website like Facebook.
The infographic also notes that social websites make it easier for socially awkward people to make friends and interact. Social networks are also great for reconnecting with old friends, but social media users should certainly note that online networks don’t always change the way that we communicate for the better.
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