Social networks are now an integral part of our daily lives, it is an indisputable fact.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram… are just some of the most famous and used social networks that record daily shares, updates and appreciations from all over the world.
It is worth noticing that not even radio and television have established themselves as means of communication so quickly in our lives.
In the 1960s, for example, there were few people who owned a TV, despite the fact that Italy was experiencing a period of economic boom.
As regards social networks, it was different. With the spread of the internet and even more with the marketing of increasingly powerful smartphones, in a short time everyone started using social networks.
However, these tools are not always used consciously and some aspects, often underestimated, must be known if you want to avoid unpleasant consequences.
Social Networks: Pros
When it comes to social networks, we immediately think over a type of global communication and information flow that occurs in real time. Distances have shortened and it takes very little to get in touch with people who may also be on the other side of the world.
Social media are “comfortable” means, accessible by anyone and in a few clicks. You only need an email address and a password and you are immediately connected to a virtual reality. Whether you are at the office, at home or on the street, it doesn’t matter, you can use them from there too.
Moreover, thanks to social networks you can take care of your interpersonal relationships, not only by staying in touch with those you already know but also by making new friends and acquaintances.
This can also be true for a new employment. Nowadays, there are many people who find a new job through social networks like LinkedIn or Facebook.
Furthermore, you can publicly share everything about your passions and thoughts in order to compare them with those of your contacts. We all wish to be heard and to actively relate to those who have something in common with us.
In addition, we can use social media to freely express our moods with the hope of being understood or as a simple safety valve. However, you must be careful not to overdo using these media, if you care about your privacy.
Finally, social media marketing is an incredibly effective communication practice for promoting a large number of products, businesses and services online. Since social networks are free, social media campaigns have competitive prices if compared to traditional advertising.
Social networks: Cons
On the other hand, using social networks in the wrong way, can be very dangerous.
Firstly, if used recklessly, social networks can turn into alienating means and you can almost completely lose touch with reality. Having lots of friends and contacts on social media is not the same as having them in real life.
Secondly, you can become addicted to social media to the extent of compromising your work productivity. Make sure of using them as a pastime only when you have nothing more important to do.
Moreover, it may happen that our personal data are used by others. Identity theft is one of the most frequent risks faced by those who use social networks. For that reason, particular attention must be paid if these media are also used for work purposes.
There are often complaints about privacy, however the most important social networks provide the possibility to set our profiles in order to choose what to make public or keep private. Nevertheless, you need to be careful and remember that sharing contents on the main social networks is in the public domain. It is therefore necessary to change the settings of each social network to protect your privacy.
Another point is that the information and news circulating on Facebook and other social networks are not always truthful. It is up to the reader to ponder on everything he/she is reading and verify the sources.
Lastly, on social media some people have the habit of hiding themselves behind a mask. There are those who pretend to be intellectuals when they are not at all, those who want to appear beautiful by retouching their photos, those who write that they have a satisfying job when this is absolutely not true.