Does Social Media Work?

Just a quick thought today, but hopefully one that will get you thinking. Sometimes I wonder if Social Media actually works.  By this I mean, does it fulfill our natural desire for connection?

Does more friends on Facebook make your life better? Does more followers on Twitter?  What about getting re-pinned on Pinterest? Or liked on Instagram?

What it boils down to, for me is, can any of these platforms replace face to face connection?  Is that even their point?  I'm not sure. And based on how many questions I've asked so far it must be obvious that I'm still undecided on this.  I think we all are, as a society.

What's clear is that people are hungry for connection but it seems most of us would rather take the easy way out.  Set up a profile and make digital friends instead of having to do the hard work of real, face to face friendship.  And I think this is telling of where we are as a society.  The easy way out seems to be the road most travelled.  Instant gratification is top priority.  I'm speaking in general terms obviously, which isn't always wise, but hopefully you understand what I mean.

I'm not anti-social media, I love Twitter, I like hanging out on Google+. I'm just curious what effect it is having on us as a society.  Are we losing the ability to build, grow and maintain strong relationships in person?  What will 'normal relationships' look like for the generations that grow up in this social media economy?  (This is the biggest question I think.  Is the shift in what is a normal relationship inherently bad, or is this just another example of adapting to technology? i.e. letters -> phone calls -> sms)

Like I said, I still haven't made my mind up on how I feel about this. I'd love to know what your thoughts are on social media.  Let me know in the comments!


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