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    Dark Side of Social Media – How You Can Be Affected?

    The dark side of social media exists and has become an integral part of our lives, but there are times when people decide to discontinue their use of it. A recent study explored the reasons behind social media discontinuance and identified two key factors: the dark side of social media and regret. Take a look at the findings!

    The dark side of social media

    The dark side of social media refers to the negative aspects of using social media. This includes feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness that can arise from excessive social media use. Many people also report feeling overwhelmed by the constant stream of information and the pressure to keep up with others. This can lead to a sense of social comparison and a feeling of inadequacy.

    Regret is another important factor in social media discontinuance. Many people report regretting the amount of time they spend on social media or the things they have posted. They may feel that their online presence is not an accurate reflection of who they are or that they have shared too much personal information.

    What are scientists say about the social media negative effect?

    This study, named “Social media discontinuance: the salient roles of dark side and regret” was published in the Journal of Information Technology Case and Application Research and investigates why some social media users choose to stop using these platforms despite their widespread popularity. The researchers, named Ziyue Huang, Prashant Palvia and Nikhil Mehta suggest that negative experiences associated with social media, known as the “dark side of social media,” can lead to feelings of regret and a desire to discontinue use. Additionally, privacy controls were found to be an important factor in users’ decisions to discontinue using social media.

    Using case studies and an interpretive approach, the study proposes a new theoretical model for understanding social media discontinuance intention. This model suggests that regret is influenced by the dark side of social media, which includes cyberbullying, misinformation, information overload, misuse, and online social stress. Both regret and privacy control were found to influence discontinuance intention. Furthermore, the model identifies privacy controls as mitigating tools for regret and summarizes various privacy control types and methods that can alleviate the effects of the dark side.

    This study’s findings are important for people to know because they shed light on the reasons why individuals may choose to discontinue their use of social media platforms. With the increasing popularity and use of social media, it is essential to understand the negative aspects associated with it, and how these experiences can lead to discontinuing usage. The study’s identification of privacy controls as a mitigating factor for regret provides insight into how social media platforms can improve user experiences by implementing effective privacy controls.

    By understanding the negative impacts of social media and the importance of privacy controls, individuals can make more informed decisions about their social media use and take steps to protect their privacy and mental health.

    How social media can affect you?

    First, it is important to recognize that social media can have both positive and negative effects on our well-being. While it can be a great tool for staying connected with friends and family, it can also be a source of stress and anxiety. If you are considering discontinuing your use of social media, it may be helpful to reflect on how it is affecting your life and what you hope to gain by disconnecting.

    Secondly, it is important to be mindful of what you post online and how it reflects your true self.

    Social media can create a distorted version of reality, and it is easy to get caught up in the pressure to present a perfect image. However, this can lead to feelings of regret and a sense of disconnection from others. Instead, focus on being authentic and genuine in your online interactions.

    Finally, it is important to recognize that social media is just one aspect of our lives. There are many other ways to stay connected with others and find fulfillment. Consider pursuing hobbies, volunteering, or spending more time with loved ones in person. By finding a balance between social media and other aspects of our lives, we can improve our well-being and reduce the negative effects of social media discontinuance.

    So, are you still a social media enthusiast now?

    Gabriela Luigia
    Gabriela Luigia
    Gabriela Luigia Sterie is Editor in Chief at Gherf. She's a researcher and her focus areas encompass digital marketing, social media, fake news, branding, consumer behavior and user behavior. Her research has been published in emerging journals. Moreover, she obtained a scientific research grant in the fake news sharing studying area. Her passion for research developed from her passion for writing. She is a copywriter and content writer with over 5 years of experience.


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