Some time ago, we analyzed in this blog the positive and negative aspects of Twitter, highlighting this social network’s peculiarities for good and bad. Now we have set out to do the same with Social Networks in general. While it is true that they share certain aspects, both good and bad, some issues differentiate both comparisons.
We may agree on the positive aspects of Social Networks, the negative side of Social Media, or neither. In any case, these are the main positive and negative aspects of Social Networks that we have experienced first-hand or seen up close.
The speed of information and the fact of finding profiles with whom we share interests, and on the contrary, the excess of posturing or the speed with which rumors spread through Social Media are just some of the positive and negative aspects of social networks that we analyze below.
Positive aspects of Social Networks
Social Networks are here to stay, and in them (and through them), we have found allies for our professional and personal lives. Apart from the long hours of leisure we can spend on networks such as Facebook or Youtube, there are many other positive aspects of Social Networks that we find daily. Here we highlight some of the most striking:
1. Speed of information
It is clear that Social Networks have strengths, both personally and professionally. One is the speed with which we learn the most important news of the day. The information is shown on our wall or on our timeline, constantly shared by contacts or friends.
On many occasions (and more and more often), we find out about the day’s big headlines from Social Networks instead of the media because someone from our environment has shared it on their Social Networks. This information is given to us and appears on our timeline or wall without us doing anything at all, is one of the significant advantages of Social Media: we are constantly informed about the current events of the day.
2. Knowledge of profiles of interest
In addition, social networks such as Pinterest, Instagram, or Twitter just as we find information quickly. Make it easier for us to find people with whom we share interests and hobbies, so that a virtual link is created with people you do not know but who, As a general rule, everything they share is useful or interesting to you.
All kinds of hobbies, hobbies, or interests are represented in Social Networks. You can easily find videos, posts, groups, or pages that talk about what interests you and connect with other users with whom you have at least one thing in common. Before, finding fans of certain activities was like looking for a needle in a haystack. Now with Social Media, it is easier than ever.
3. Easy to get back in touch
And it is not necessary to go to the unknown to highlight another great advantage of Social Networks, such as the ease with which contact with old friends or classmates or former jobs is resumed that, otherwise, we would not have found in the immensity of the network. Is it me, or since Facebook has been made more class dinners, faculty, or childhood friends than before?
4. Access to all types of content
Another positive aspect of social networks is everything we learn from others, hobbies, and professional matters. In the networks, there are people with a lot of talent, and the virtualization of the contents means we can access all kinds of advice, guides, tutorials, and manuals. It helps us in our day-to-day, either to prepare a professional presentation or a cake for birthdays or family parties.
5. Capacity for self-promotion
I do not want to end the positive part of Social Networks without highlighting their significant role in our professional facet. It is becoming increasingly common for social networks to be oriented towards professional objectives.
6. Source of entertainment
Habits have changed, and gone are the times when television was the queen of entertainment. In the current scenario, Social Networks leads the ranking of entertainment media.
Media content and videos such as stories on Instagram or games and tests on Facebook occupy much of the free time of young people and not so young. Not forgetting instant messaging apps like WhatsApp take the cake for time spent online.
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7. Online sales
With Instagram Shopping, any business can sell its products. How? Through a business account, a brand can upload images of its products.
These are interactive images where the price appears when you click on a specific product. If the user is interested, they will only have to click on the price that appears as a label to view the detailed product on the brand’s official website and, if interested, finally buy it. The sale with two clicks is already here.
Negative aspects of Social Networks
The other side of the coin is the negative aspects that Social Networks present that, unfortunately, are not far behind the advantages. It is more and more common to run into the problems of Social Media; These are, for me, the negative aspects of Social Networks in general.
1. Selective exhibitionism
The first is an excess of ‘selective’ exhibitionism in which we show only one side of our lives: the attractive one, the one full of success and joy, leaving aside job layoffs, love breakups, and suspense exams. We only show the successful side of our lives on social networks and leave aside everything that can make us feel vulnerable or inferior to others.
About this matter, we found this short film that shows in all its crudeness the spiral of posturing in Social Networks and the almost obligatory nature of sharing only the successful aspects of our lives to achieve social acceptance.
We encourage you to watch this video that shows in a few minutes the most bitter face of Social Networks:
2. Excess vanity
Along with the posture and almost hand in hand, we find the excess of vanity transmitted via Social Networks as a negative aspect. We already discussed it when we analyzed the specific case of Twitter. Still, it is something that many Social Networks have in common: from the exaggerations of the resume and professional experience on LinkedIn of many to certain types of photos on Instagram, through the retweets we make to the compliments that others give us; It seems that vanity is one of the most powerful engines of Social Networks.
3. The fragility of our privacy
Precisely because of the previous point and without even realizing it, we share intimate or very personal information with thousands of strangers. Erasing this digital footprint is not easy; some images and comments can cause us to lose a job or, directly, not access a job for posterity. It would not be the first time someone lost their position due to an off-tone comment on Social Networks.
Another disadvantage is the lack of privacy and constant exposure to third parties in our personal lives.
4. Unverified rumors
And suppose we view the immediacy of information with advantage. In that case, the other side of the coin is the speed with which rumors that are not true, false myths, urban legends, directly invented stories, and increasingly retouched and manipulated photos.
In Social Media, this type of pseudo-information spreads with the speed of a virus; this is undoubtedly another of the negative aspects of Social Networks.
5. Waste of time
More and more people consider Social Networks a waste of time. There are many times in which the population consults their mobile throughout the day to see what has happened and what their contacts have uploaded or shared.
And in the end, the sum of those breaks is a total of time spent on networks that have not been dedicated to other tasks, whether at work or personal level. For this reason, more and more users wholly or temporarily disconnect from their social profiles.
6. Too much advertising
There are more and more ads flooding the websites. Social advertising floods the networks in the form of banners, video ads, or promotions that appear between publications or, by surprise, fill the entire screen of the page you had previously accessed.
What brands thought was a source of engagement is working in reverse. Introducing many ads on networks is collapsing the user, who is moving away from the brand by leaps and bounds.
7. Mistakes that can be expensive
Finally, the bad thing about Social Networks is that they are a loudspeaker of our opinions (which is not always good). Before, if we said something inaccurate or wrong, nothing happened; Now, screwing up on Social Networks leaves a trace, and in some cases, they have been sounded ridiculous nationally for being carried out by public figures. If the message to be shared had been thought of before, some resignations would have been avoided than others.
Infographic: positive aspects and negative aspects of Social Networks
In addition to the positive and negative aspects of social networks, in this other article, we delve into the advantages of using Social Networks for companies. We do not doubt the importance of Social Media for any Online Marketing strategy, however modest it may be.