The social media era has caused a huge stir, with many debaters taking center stage and engaging in a tug of war as to whether social media is a savior or destroyer in this technology era. Despite social media having a huge population of users, the problems associated with this technology cannot be overlooked, as they affect all users regardless of age, race, or gender. Policymakers, researchers, and users have identified the shortcomings associated with social media, which often impair competitiveness and innovation (Ryan, 2019). Therefore, the setbacks associated with social media are important, as how mitigation factors can be reached to create a safe and reliable digital era. The paper takes a systematic breakdown of the current problems with social media in universities and offers a user-friendly solution to promote the efficiency of social media.
How can social media organizations affect the decisions of stakeholders?
The use of social media has been scrutinized, and thought-provoking questions have been raised on how social media affects the decisions of stakeholders. The most repeated issue that raises concern about social media usage is the lack of a definite boundary between online life and real life. It is out of context to blame social media for causing a stir when people fail to differentiate between social media and real life (Ryan, 2019). However, since most people use it for social reasons, social media antics may absorb some people, affecting their physical and social skills and their touch with reality. Therefore, these people might make decisions based on false perceptions rather than reality when not guided. If this scenario is applied in an institutional setup, including universities, it may negatively impact student learning and impair education institutions. Besides, social media exposes people to potential dangers as they socialize with strangers with a strong belief in social media friendships. Let us face it; it is hard to understand the true intentions of the people users interact with when using social media platforms. Therefore, this poses a huge risk to social media users’ physical and mental safety. Consequently, social media users must understand the potential dangers and exercise caution whenever they interact or access information from social media platforms.
The increase in the use of social media has also been increasingly alarming, coupled with a lack of efficient regulations to help create a safe interacting space. The increased access to smart gadgets and the evolving social media platforms has enabled access for young people who are clueless about the dangers of social media usage. Besides, the information posted on social media can be misleading due to little restrictions measures to share information. Consequently, this makes other users susceptible to issues such as cyberbullying, depression, and social anxiety caused by the triggers of accessing inappropriate content (Mohr et al., 2013). These issues may escalate, especially in teenagers, and lead to extreme cases of suicide and murder, especially in learning institutions.
Moreover, using social media can be addicting, thus making people less effective in physical interactions and task completion. Social media platforms offer access to limitless information, so people are often glued to electronic gadgets to continuously feed their brains with more information. It is often argued that the addiction originates from the dopamine hormone, which often triggers the urge to seek more content rather than focus on other development activities (Ryan, 2019). Therefore, this creates a dependent habit of consuming social media information rather than staying in touch with real-life occurrences. Besides, this promotes self-esteem issues based on the information consumed on social media platforms.
The cases of a lack of self-esteem originate from the constant need to seek validation from other social media users, mainly based on appearance and material possessions. Therefore, when other users lack access to exquisite material possessions and lack recognition based on appearance, this causes self-image issues that might escalate to depression. However, the users need to remember that some of the information shared might be different from the true reflection of the people’s lives which requires in-depth deciphering. Therefore, there needs to be a clear guide for people to understand the different parameters that lead up to these behaviors and effectively differentiate between authentic behavior and social mirages.
However, shifting from other social media platforms to a positive and educative platform will take time. People will often weigh the disadvantages it brings, such as limitations on the content types. For instance, the platform limits sharing of abusive and non-educative content. However, some social media users are addicted to non-educative content that often triggers dopamine. Therefore, instead of embracing the advantages of using this software, some people might need help to refrain from using this platform and opt to use non-development platforms. This is a typical case of loss aversion as the individuals fail to acknowledge how life-changing this platform is and only focus on the purposes it overlooks (The decision lab, 2019). The pleasure of gaining competitive skills should be recognized more rather than focusing on the features that the platform eliminates.
Positive target behaviors that organizations would like to encourage.
The cases of cyberbullying have increased significantly in the past years as social media use has also increased. The lack of strict social media regulations has caused significant psychological harm to users unaware of the potential dangers of social media. However, an outlined target behavior must be outlined to help shield the public from the extensive dangers of social media platforms (Schueller et al., 2013). One of the most effective target behaviors organizations should encourage in social media usage is self-management procedures. It is often argued that self-management is the most crucial step in reducing the current social media problems. This is a true assumption since people tend to act and behave better provided, they grasp their actions and are aware of their contributions to the quality of social media usage (Mohr et al., 2013). Therefore, organizations should champion self-management designs to help develop positive attributes and avoid dependence on social media usage.
Behavioral intervention design
This behavioral intervention design aims to apply psychological and behavioral technologies to target emotions, behaviors, and cognitions to support social media users’ mental and physical health. However, to understand the potential of behavioral intervention technologies, it is important to understand the advantages and misgivings of these technologies and capitalize on the same. Therefore, this behavioral intervention model seeks to explore self-management and capitalize on its disadvantages by creating alternatives to negative social media consumption. The design tends to limit irrelevant social media content and focus on educational content to help users positively interact (Lutz & Hoffmann, 2013). The model intends to create educational content in different disciplines and personal development courses to help boost the users’ confidence and discourage cases of cyberbullying and dependence on validation.
Why should stakeholders implement my invention?
The stakeholders should adopt my invention as it has more positive than negative impacts of using social media platforms. This platform is unique since little attention is given to positive social media experiences. Therefore, this platform seeks to unite people and create a platform to share positive experiences that foster personal growth. This will help reduce cases of depression and suicide while offering more positive experiences (Brown, 2021). The invention intends to utilize a user-friendly algorithm that favors its users and limits any negative information affecting its user-friendliness. This platform will be a game changer in institutions and society by affirming positive interactions and teaching positive skills that build the community.
In conclusion, developing effective social media platforms would be a good step toward eliminating dysfunctional societies. Creating awareness of the positive use of social media platforms is not a surety towards meeting its desired purpose. Consequently, the design of the platforms should encourage positive interaction and limit any cases of negative interaction that impairs life quality. Therefore, adequate time and research should be employed to create a unique and self-sustaining system that does not require human intervention to boost efficiency. Therefore, relevant organizations should adopt well-designed platforms that promote positive human behavior and encourage upskilling, creating an aware and friendly society that promotes human coexistence.
Brown, S. (2021, June 30). Social media is broken. A new report offers 25 ways to fix it. MIT Sloan. https://mitsloan.mit.edu/ideas-made-to-matter/social-media-broken-a-new-report-offers-25-ways-to-fix-it
Lutz, C., & Hoffmann, C. (2013, June). (PDF) The Impact of Social Media on Stakeholder Engagement. ResearchGate. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/259452067_The_Impact_of_Social_Media_on_Stakeholder_Engagement
Mohr, D. C., Burns, M. N., Schueller, S. M., Clarke, G., & Klinkman, M. (2013). Behavioral Intervention Technologies: Evidence review and recommendations for future research in mental health. General Hospital Psychiatry, 35(4), 332–338. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2013.03.008
Ryan, M. (2019, July 2). MultiBrief: 5 problems facing social media in 2019. Exclusive.multibriefs.com. https://exclusive.multibriefs.com/content/5-problems-facing-social-media-today/marketing
Schueller, S. M., Muñoz, R. F., & Mohr, D. C. (2013). Realizing the Potential of Behavioral Intervention Technologies. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 22(6), 478–483. https://doi.org/10.1177/0963721413495872
The decision lab. (2019). Loss aversion – Biases & Heuristics | The Decision Lab. The Decision Lab. https://thedecisionlab.com/biases/loss-aversion