Effects of Social Media on Pakistani Youth: The practise of social networking has spread to practically every country in the world. Finding out how social media affects young people’s daily lives has become crucial in the present. The youth are caught in this rapid transformation since technology is advancing very quickly from one year to the next.
A great amount of content is being created and shared online, bookmarked, and networked on thanks to the explosion in the use of social networking services. Young people are frequent users of social networking platforms. This study assesses the effect of social media platforms on many facets of youth quality of life. The way that young people interact with their parents, friends, and the technology they use is changing as a result of social networking. 95 responders to an online poll that was undertaken for this purpose completed it. The main conclusions showed that social media has a big impact on young people’s lives. Social networking sites draw their attention before directing it toward undesirable behaviours that cause adolescents to become distracted from their academics and perform poorly in school, as well as experience sadness, anxiety, and other physical problems.
The internet has become one of the most effective ways to connect individuals in the current age. Social networking sites (SNS), which have grown in popularity as the internet has developed, are now the most cutting-edge and appealing methods of bringing people together globally. These websites have produced transnational, global, and national settings for the fostering of social ties between strangers. MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Skype, Viber, and WhatsApp are some of the most used SNS. These have enabled quick and simple global connectivity, and these applications have drawn millions of users, many of whom have incorporated them into daily routines. Thus, social networking sites have altered how people connect globally.
Technology has gained control in recent years and has brought about some significant developments on a worldwide scale. Due to technological advancement, distance barriers have shrunk, and new platforms are being introduced to connect people worldwide. Nearly two-thirds of internet users frequent social networking sites like Facebook, Myspace, LinkedIn, etc. on a daily or hourly basis, making them useful as a tool for connecting and communicating.
While “media” refers to a medium or instrument, “social” refers to interpersonal interaction or engagement (e.g. internet etc.). The term “social media” refers to a group of online communication networks that let people connect, associate, work together, and communicate across borders. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest are a few of the popular social networking services. These services give users the ability to instantly contact with loved ones no matter where they are in the world, share ideas and photos, organise events, and plan parties.
Pakistan is regarded as the world’s fifth-largest youthful nation. Approximately 63 percent of the population is made up of people between the ages of 15 and 33. A higher number of young people is thought to be a key economic engine for development and growth.
Social media’s effects
The term “social media” refers to a group of programmes like (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Whatsapp, Viber, Messenger, and Instagram). All throughout the world, internet usage is rising quickly day after day. The vast majority of young people, including those who watch television and listen to radio, are increasingly shifting from electronic media to social media. The Internet has brought individuals together to share information, learn about others’ opinions, and engage in social networking. Social media is to blame for bringing people together and reducing distance.
In the present era, social networking services are more prevalent than ever. The behaviour of people, particularly young ones, has been directly influenced by these websites. Although these websites have numerous advantages, the most worrying development is that young people have been observed to be more isolated in their own worlds and unsure of how to engage with society. As a result, individuals gradually lose their ability to communicate and their connection to their own family. Children are very addicted to social media sites because they spend so much time online updating their status, choosing a new profile photo, posting on walls, and even doing anything they want. They gauge their level of popularity based on how many “Likes” they receive; the more “Likes” they receive, the more well-liked they are.
Today’s youth spend a lot of time on social media. It is how people interact with others, express themselves, and share their lives. Social media can occasionally be harmful for teenagers, though.
They can begin comparing their posts to those of others on social media sites, feel inadequate or unworthy of likes, and then spend hours reading through other people’s updates with no breaks for self-care.
A lot of people’s lives are significantly impacted by social media. It is typical to observe people absorbed in their phones rather than communicating with those around them or losing track of their whereabouts due to being too preoccupied to look up from their phones.
Social media’s effect on business
The newest hot topic in marketing is social media, which is used by brands, companies, and organisations to spread news, make friends, establish relationships, and get followers. Businesses utilise social media to improve an organization’s performance in a number of ways, including to achieve corporate goals and raise the organization’s yearly sales. Social media has the advantage of a communication platform that makes it easier for a firm to communicate with its stockholders in both directions. Various social networking platforms can be used to advertise businesses. In order to reach the greatest number of users or consumers, several organisations market their businesses on social media. Social media allows customers to communicate and connect with businesses on a more personal level. If a company has already built a name for itself, social media may help it grow that name and give the company a voice. Organizations can create their strategy to promote their organisation with the use of social media.
Social media’s effects on society
Social media, as we are all aware, has a significant influence on our society. The most popular social networking platforms on the internet are numerous. Some social media platforms have changed how individuals interact and communicate.
the internet. People have the ability to re-connect with their former friends, coworkers, and friends thanks to social networking sites. The ability to share information, including text, images, audio, and video, with new acquaintances is another benefit. Social media also alters a society’s way of life.
Effects of Social Media on Children
Like a coin, social media has two sides. On the one hand, it provides for engagement and the exchange of ideas/knowledge amongst individuals all over the world; on the other hand, it may encourage dishonest posts, messages, conflicts, cyberbullying, and problems with mental and physical health. Social media channels were created with the goal of facilitating communication, and young people were among the first adopters of this digital media. But their well-being has also been affected by high levels of participation. But regardless of whether it is used for personal or professional purposes, social media is a vital lifeline in today’s world and a necessary component of everyone’s existence.
The increase in youth in Pakistan
The youth are thought of as a society’s and a nation’s future. Pakistan has one of the highest young populations in the world, with more than 64% of the population under 30. If we are able to take use of it, Pakistan could benefit most from it.
Unfortunately, a number of factors are turning this dividend into a ticking time bomb, including a lack of employment opportunities, a lack of social interaction, unequal access to healthcare and education, as well as social injustices, outmoded traditions, and a negative attitude toward young people in the community and society. Dreams and goals of young people to receive an education and obtain respectable employment become a nightmare. The lack of future hope frustrates the kids, who as a result grow discouraged.
According to the UNDP Report 2020, only 6% of Pakistani youth have completed more than 12 years of school, while 29% are illiterate. Additionally, it notes that only 39% of the four million children who reach working age find employment annually. The fact that roughly half of the nation’s youth are not enrolled in school, seeking job, or undergoing training is the most concerning development.
Many young people in Pakistan receive their education through the unofficial sector; as a result, they lack the necessary qualifications and credentials. This group of young people ends up working in the unofficial sector with no legal protection for their rights since they are unable to find employment as skilled workers in domestic and international markets. According to the ILO, the unemployment rate will stay at 9.56 percent in 2020–21. Over the next five years, an additional 1.3 million jobs must be created annually in order to increase labour force participation rates.
Pakistan’s Youth Development Score Remains Low
The lowest-scoring nation in the region and its neighbours, except Afghanistan (0.421), is Pakistan (0.517), according to the most recent Youth Development Index.
Worryingly, Pakistan is the only poorly performing country among the Commonwealth’s bottom 10 that is not in Sub-Saharan Africa. The 2020 Global Youth Development Index, which evaluates the conditions of young people in 181 nations, placed Pakistan 162nd overall out of 181 nations.
In the index, nations are ranked from 0.00 (lowest) to 1.00 (best) based on changes in young employment, education, health, equality, and inclusion, as well as peace and security and political and civic participation. It examines 27 variables, including voting and literacy, to reflect the situation of the 1.8 billion individuals in the world between the ages of 15 and 29.
Pakistan’s score decreased by 64.29 percent from a comparatively low score of 0.168 in 2010, according to certain snapshots of the most recent index.
The fact that R&D investment fell over the period in five economies—Pakistan, India (0.626), Mozambique, Sri Lanka (0.747), and Uganda—was more alarming. It’s crucial to pinpoint the innovation policy levers that are most critical for enabling the digital economy in order to solve this issue.
Aligning research with the demands of the digital economy is a crucial component of this. To create innovative ecosystems and an entrepreneurial culture, this will require closer industry and educational engagement.
It has been crucial for young people in developing nations, especially in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Cambodia, to have better access to the internet and correct information, as well as more freedom and opportunity, especially for female youth in rural areas. All of the young people consulted want to put an end to child marriage and the attendant family violence.
Afghanistan improved in terms of gender parity in literacy, economic marginalisation, early marriage, and gender parity in safety and security, coming in second in the region after India, the Maldives, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.
According to the most recent edition, the index also shows that, although development has slowed, the circumstances of young people around the world have improved by 3.1% between 2010 and 2018. Tuesday saw the announcement of the Commonwealth Secretariat’s triennial rankings of youth development in 181 nations, with 156 of them experiencing at least marginal gains in their ranks. The report emphasises the upward direction of young development, which the virus could reverse for the first time unless immediate action is made to protect the pre-pandemic gains, even if the data used in the index predates Covid-19.
Social media usage among Pakistani youth
We’ve all experienced times when an hour or more has passed while we were skimming through posts or watching YouTube videos.
Social media has altered people’s perspectives on business and technology, but it has also altered how they communicate and use their free time. As a result, our younger generation is leading this transition as a result of these achievements. Social media can be seen as having both positive and negative characteristics, or as two sides of the same coin.
However, it has been noticed recently that the negative effects are now outweighing the favourable ones, particularly when speaking to youngsters. Problems now extend beyond merely cyberbullying. Poor academic performance, less family time, youth being pulled away from their culture, increased vulnerability to sexting, and mental disturbance due to cyberbullying are all effects of excessive social media use.
Although studies show that social networking sites are a valuable source of knowledge, there may be more drawbacks to social media than advantages. The fact that most students use social networking sites mostly for entertainment, to pass time, to meet up with friends they already have or to establish new ones can support this notion. These websites are made to draw in as many visitors as possible.
Therefore, even if you don’t want to waste your precious time on social media in the beginning, you may still fall victim to attention-grabbing thumbnails or meme pages. Students are diverted from their original goal—the reason they initially opened social media—by this.
Furthermore, it is undeniable that pupils who frequently multitask perform worse academically. Distractions caused by YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Snapchat significantly reduce our capacity to concentrate on the task at hand. To further emphasise, parents and instructors are aware of students’ compulsive usage of social media because this association is evident on their report cards. The spread of COVID-19 cases in these unheard-of times has kept everyone within their home. Sports and outdoor activities are therefore strongly discouraged.
Teenagers frequently use social media in their free time as a result. Teenagers’ professional and personal development ambitions, which could improve their scholastic trajectory, have been sidetracked as a result. They are using their time wisely by engaging in likes, shares, comments, posting selfies, and conversing instead of engaging in activities like meditation, fitness, learning new things, reading books, or researching in other disciplines. Without being aware that neglecting personal growth can have detrimental effects months or years down the road.
A wall is created between family members as a result of social media, which is another negative effect. Social media is a fantastic tool for communication, but issues arise when teenagers begin to distance themselves from their families. Teenagers who spend too much time on social media get secluded in their rooms and avoid going to public places, family gatherings, conventional social settings, neighbourhoods, and other important associations. Teenagers appear to have made a compromise by gently eschewing family get-togethers and in-person contacts in favour of social media.
When social media is used negatively, it brings to light another serious issue: cyberbullying. Teenagers in Pakistan who experience cyberbullying frequently have anxiety disorders, self-isolation, severe depression, and in rare instances, suicidal thoughts.
Teenagers frequently communicate excessive amounts of information with a large number of people because they believe that a person’s “social quotient” is defined by the number of friends or followers they have rather than by their actual abilities. They add strangers in an effort to get more friends or followers, which gives them the right to infringe their private.
Consequently, these teenagers are put at a higher risk of experiencing cyberbullying. Some youngsters are easily swayed by the stunning lives and bodies captured on Facebook and Instagram. As a result, individuals continuously start comparing themselves to the person hiding behind their mobile device, which not only undermines their self-confidence and self-esteem.
As a result, they begin berating themselves for not being stronger, prettier, taller, smarter, and so forth. These immaculate images shared on social media also have significant psychological effects, isolating sensitive teenagers from society.
Sexting is another issue brought on by social media. Sexting entails primarily using social media to transmit, receive, or forward sexually explicit content. Although there are currently no numbers available for Pakistan, if we look at the rising rates around the world, we can acknowledge that Pakistani teenagers are equally susceptible to this issue. Girls are the group most at risk from sexting. In Pakistan, some females have reported receiving indecent images and sexually explicit messages from unidentified accounts. In reality, a recent instance can be used as an example, in which some teachers from a private school association were disciplined for sending their children sexually explicit messages.
In conclusion, we cannot dismiss the fact that social media has two sides. Which side we choose to support, though, is totally up to us. In this day and age, using technology and social media is crucial, but what’s more crucial is striking a balance between the virtual and physical worlds. Family and school should come first. If social media is stealing your valuable time, you should address the issue since, if ignored, it could have serious consequences.
Social Media’s Beneficial Effects On Adolescence
However, this does not imply that social media and the internet are always bad. These problems should not be discounted. Although these aspects are rarely highlighted, social media has a lot of advantages for adolescent users.
Teenagers frequently claim that social media enhances their sense of self-worth, creativity, connection to friends and family, and ability to learn new things. Let’s investigate these elements in greater detail to understand how social media might help today’s youngsters.
The connection to friends and family is cited as the key benefit by almost 40% of teenagers who think social media is generally beneficial. Connecting with distant family members was awkward and challenging before the internet. Additionally, it was practically impossible to make new international acquaintances because travel time and distance would have hampered or prevented most conceivable communication.
Human connection is now much simpler than it has ever been because to the internet. Teenagers use social media not only to stay in touch with their friends and family, but also to meet new pals they might not have otherwise made owing to geographical distance.
Increased social interaction not only strengthens existing connections but also enables those who find it difficult to interact with others in person to make new friends and feel less lonely.
Many people think that using social media always lowers one’s self-esteem. Furthermore, although cyberbullying and harassment are important aspects that shouldn’t be ignored, the reality is that the issue is more nuanced than that. There is little proof to prove that social media always has a detrimental impact, according to some studies, because self-esteem in teens is already normally very low.
It’s interesting to note that kids frequently report feeling more confident while using social media responsibly. This might be as a result of them finding encouraging people online and using social media as a platform for self-expression. Online inspirational content and upbeat messaging assist young people maintain their sense of value.
Additionally, social networking is proven to foster innovation. This is advantageous for adolescents’ academic performance as well as general wellbeing. Teenagers are expressing themselves more than earlier generations thanks to the rise in the number of artistic activities they participate in.
Teenagers can benefit from sharing their art with the public, even though the act of creating art itself is frequently soothing and rewarding. There, students will frequently find motivation to pursue their artistic goals as well as encouragement, support, and admiration for their work. Prior to social media, it was much harder to put one’s art into practise and find an audience. Now, potentially millions of individuals can view their work online with just one click.
Find out Information
Information is now primarily obtained from the internet. Teenagers are not an exception to this rule. They frequently use social media and the internet to assist them with their schoolwork and homework. The days of relying solely on a textbook or an encyclopaedia are long gone.
Social media has also made it much simpler to learn more about world cultures and current events. A few decades ago, it was uncommon for nations to have considerable knowledge of the cultures, histories, and practises of other parts of the world. Now, a simple web search will provide you all the information you need about any location.