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The New Stuff

Facebook Making You Mentally Ill or Bogus Reports?

Are Facebook and social media sites getting a bad wrap from all the so called "studies" which basically tell us that we have no life? These "studies" say we prefer the people online to our "real" life friends; women hate other women online;we only know seven percent of the people we "friend" on Facebook, we don't really mean it when we post birthday wishes, and oh yeah, it will make us mentally ill.
Granted studies dooming online users gets clicks and reads, but could there is a different issue? The world has changed, like it or not, and these people who are doing these so called "studies" are not fans of it. Anyone knows you can make a test reveal what you want it to just by the way the questions are posed, and who is being asked the question.
These groups want to act like there has to be a separation between an online and offline life. Back in the Prodigy days, I would totally concur with this idea, because people were never known by their name and there was not really an interest in getting to know the person behind the name, but social media is a different deck of cards.
Social media allows for building of relationships for business or personal reasons. It is an invitation of sorts which allows people to meet on their own terms. Those terms could be 140 character posts on Twitter, video hangouts on Google Plus, or playing games with others on Facebook. Unlike the days of bulletin boards, we are more in control of who can enter our life and be a part of it. We set the terms and the boundaries.
The social aspect allows people to set up meet ups/tweet ups in safe environments. People also get the opportunity to meet people at various events around the world. While the media aspect allows the average Joe to publish his blog post/article/video, and possibly profit from it. Businesses benefit from social media because they have the opportunity to hear from their customers directly and contrary to what some would have you believe, it's not all people with complaints.
The "studies" have been pretty negative toward social media, which could make a person wonder who is really conducting the tests and who are they talking to? If they are talking to people who barely know how to turn on their computer or who are not active in social media at all or on a very limited basis, then that might explain it, but tests done on active members of any of the social media sites would not have the same results. Which makes one think the studies are bogus or designed as link bait.