Online life vs. real life

Today, 74% of all internet users now use social media. From Facebook to Instagram, an on-line presence of some degree is paramount in today’s society. Although there are many advantages to this, there are also issues to consider. Not just issues such as trolling or bullying arise, but also a false sense of reality. Someone’s real life can be portrayed completely different to their on-line life. Personally speaking, my instagram account tells the tale of a girl who dines out and shops all the time, when in reality the stress of money as a college student consumes me. Someone can lead two completely different lives through the aid of social media.

This also leads to the notion of being ‘friends’ with someone on Facebook. I have 700 friends on the site, yet realistically I would barely talk to 200 of them. I have had people like my status and ignore me on the street, so therefore every six months or so I do a Facebook ‘clean out’ where I un-friend those who I barely know. It is amazing the security that you have behind a laptop screen, the confidence one has to say or do something that they never would in real life is phenomenal.

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We now live in this scary bubble where if we go for a drink on a Friday night, a stranger in the bar can research our life story just by hearing our names. We also seem to quantify how funny, interesting or attractive we are, through likes, comments and follows. I find myself hesitant to post a status  on Facebook because I am scared no one will like it and there is this sense of failure that ensues, whereas I am happy to post a picture to Instagram regardless of the feedback it receives. Different social mediums lead to a different mix of audiences and emotions, something that I will delve into in future blog posts.

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