Ibrahim Ghazal ‘22
It is no secret that technology has been progressively improving on a daily basis. Throughout the Coronavirus pandemic, social media tech companies have prospered and supported users to still have the opportunity to connect with one another under these restrictive circumstances. As of January 2021, 4.66 billion people are internet users, and 4.20 billion people are considered social media users. More than half of the world’s population uses the internet and social media on a consistent basis. Social media platforms such as Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Snapchat are globally utilized on a daily basis.
As of recently, a new social media platform has been on the rise, TikTok. In January of 2021, Sensor Tower reported that TikTok has globally reached over 2.6 billion downloads. Approximately 130 million users are from the United States. It is clear that TikTok has been dominating the social media world, but why is this important?
Studies have demonstrated how TikTok, as well as other social media platforms, have helped countless individuals cope with anxiety and stress under quarantine. Additionally, social media allows businesses and companies to prosper and succeed because of the large audiences that they are able to reach. As a result of user data that each social media platform gathers, algorithms are used to ensure that advertisements are being promoted to intended audiences. The algorithms used on social platforms allow companies to increase their chances of prosperity and growth.
Social media platforms also allow users to express their thoughts and stay up to date on current world events. Current events are often posted on these platforms before they even reach television networks, which even allows users to efficiently tackle and react to challenges that our world constantly faces.
The immense power of social media was also demonstrated when GameStop’s stock surged because of a Reddit community that forced a “short squeeze”. As a result of the GameStop stock surge, many people became aware of how powerful these platforms are when people work together. Although social media has several benefits, because it can also negatively impact people’s lives, it is crucial that people approach these platforms with care and responsibility.