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Effect of Social Media on Meaningful Interactions

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Media
Wordcount: 1731 words Published: 8th Feb 2020

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Many aspects of our lives have been revolutionised by social media on how users interact with each other, through the methods of business meetings to how we interact with family and loved ones. The statement that has been put forward is an argument that has been used by the older generation which they use to debate why social media is damaging to society especially young minds. But overall, social media is a neutral platform and depending on the user it will either be used for good or evil. A meaningful interaction can be eloquent even if it is not face to face because when an interaction occurs through social media and produces benefits for both parties it portrays that social media has not diminished but created a stable relationship. Social media is used to talk with those that do not live in the same area and has its benefits because you are able to catch up with family that you may not see that often.

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There are many arguments that will give an assumption that social media has and will diminish meaningful interactions between their users, which I believe is false. This is because businesses such as Facebook, Tinder, Instagram, and other businesses removes the ability for a facial interaction which may be a result of poor communication. Earlam says in his article from the Counselling Dictionary (Earlam, 2010) “poor communication skills are the largest contributor to conflict in relationships.” This infers that relationships where communication is terrible will lead to the relationship being broken because its interactions are less meaningful. Some may argue that broken relationships occur even without social media playing a part in it, but it is the people in the relationships themselves because for a relationship to be meaningful it will need both parties. Even though this is true to a certain extent it has been proved that a long-distance relationship will be harder to maintain and keep it meaningful. A long-distance relationship can be created though social therefore portraying that social media affects whether someone’s relationship can be meaningful or diminishing. Earlam then goes onto say (Earlam, 2010) “the effects of poor communication on a relationship can threaten the existence of a relationship. This is portraying that poor communication will always have a big part to play in meaningful interactions, despite whether social media has been used or not. If poor communication carries on this meaningful interaction can eventually lead to a breakup. An article of psychology today says (Seidman, 2015) “Facebook can help you practice relationship maintenance techniques.” This infers that social media does not diminish meaningful interactions but protects it and makes the relationship more meaningful in some circumstances because by using Facebook and other social media platforms it will teach the user how maintain a relationship which will lead to the relationship becoming more meaningful. Seidman then goes onto saying that (Seidman, 2015)  “Facebook makes new relationships more accessible.” Which implies that more meaningful interactions and relationships are being created, for example someone can add their family member who does not live the same geographical area as them and talk to them as well video call. Which means that Facebook has helped built a stronger bond between families and it helped the interaction more meaningful. On the other hand, this does not necessarily mean that the relationship will be meaningful because even though it is easily accessible; you may never know someone’s true emotion in an online relationship this has to be done through a face to face encounter. Overall, social media will decrease the chance of a meaningful interaction occurring through an online relationship since certain aspects are needed so that all relationships are healthy and meaningful.

Another area where it is argued that social media diminishes relationships is families. One reason for this is because parents may not be involved in their children’s life as much as they believe. Taylor says in article from Psychology Today, (Taylor, 2013) “as digital immigrants, parents can struggle to gain proficiency and comfort with the new technology their digital- native children have already mastered.” Thus, portraying that parents with their lack of understanding modern technology as their children limits how much they can communicate with their children. Taylor then goes onto saying (Taylor, 2013) “this divergence… in such a key area of children’s lives make it more difficult for parents to assume the role of the teacher and guide in their children’s use of technology. This shows that if parents ability of understanding technology is limited it will lead to them not having the ability to interact with their children to stop or limit its use. It can also be argued that family interactions can be damaged because parents may try to limit or stop their children from going on social media if they do not have the right amount of knowledge, showing that by trying to bring the family it can also be damaged. Families in todays societies are not the same compared to families 20-30 years ago because single parent families are on the rise which will mean that children will able find social media more useful as they can use that to communicate with their parents that may live far from them. Jacelyn Ekern says in her article (Ekern, 2013) “technology is also helpful for families of divorce or separation through more immediate voice or face contact.” This shows that social media is diversifying because it shows how someone can have meaningful interactions and relationships and it not social media that diminishes the relationship but the parents themselves as they may not immerse themselves in this new wave of technology. Furthermore, if social media diminishes meaningful interactions between families why is more meaningful relationships created between children and friends increasing. This is because children are involved in a different form of having a meaningful interaction and this is due to the wave of such innovative technology. Therefore, implying that parents are at fault when it comes to a divide of families and social media.

Lastly, many businesses have used social media to advertise their products so that they can increase their sales this is because they are able to reach a larger market. Erik Qualam says (Qualam, 2010) “Twitter gives you access to 85 million users who are able to read your tweets… This scales much better than the individual telling a few friends a week about the new product.  This shows us that many social media platforms like Twitter gives the chance for a business to succeed and the ability to gain a lot of revenue which will lead to the businesses gaining more profit thus meaning that the business may become a monopoly in the market this is because their products are being shown to a larger market. Social media is used in the business sector so that a meaningful interaction can occur and those businesses who do not use the social media platform to advertise products will most likely fail. Qualam later goes onto saying that (Qualam, 2010) “businesses don’t have the choice on whether or not they do social media, the choice is how well they do it.” This is true because many businesses are forced to use social media to interact with their users this is because they want to gain more customers by expanding their target market by doing so it will enable them to bring in more revenue which will lead to them making more profit. From this fact people argue that social media does help but it is not necessary when a business wants to expand. This is false because without a lot of revenue a business will not be able to expand and if the business has a small target market it may not gain enough revenue to expand. Therefore, portraying social media is the perfect platform for all businesses to use as they are appealing to such a large market which will bring in more customers. Overall, social media does produce meaningful interactions because a business can easily gain many customers by using social media to attract people to buy their products.

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To conclude, social media does not diminish meaningful interactions between users when related to businesses and families. Although it does diminish meaningful interactions when it comes to relationships due to the fact that you will never know what the other persons emotions is until you meet them face to face as well as people can use social media for the wrong reasons such promoting racial slurs and violent videos, which shows that relationships between users are diminished because some may become offended by what they see on social media platforms. However, when it comes to the business sector social media does not diminish meaningful interactions between its users because by using social media businesses are able to gain customers and by customers buying products from a business they will have the ability to use such products. The same is for family and friends because a meaningful relationship can be built through social media because, a child who may have been separated from his or her parents when they were younger will have the ability to find their parents through social media showing social media does not diminishes but can help and build healthy relationships between families.


  • Earlam, S., 2010. How does communication affect the quality of close relationships?. Counselling Dictionary, 27 November, p. 1.
  • Ekern, J., 2013. Impact of Social Media Addiction in Families. [Online]
    Available at: https://www.addictionhope.com/blog/social-media-addiction-families/
    [Accessed 13 May 2019].
  • Qualam, E., 2010. Socialnomics: How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do. Revised and Updated Edition ed. N/A: Wiley.
  • Seidman, G., 2015. How Facebook Affects Our Relationships. Whether Facebook helps or harms your relationship depends on how you use it., 28 May, p. 1.
  • Taylor, J., 2013. Is Technology Creating a Family Divide. Pyschology today, 13 March, p. 1.


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