Manipulation by Your Own Phone Screen  

Staff Writer: Gia Gunderman 

Everyone knows that certain social media is quite fabricated and usually a front for a life that doesn’t even exist. This generation is being constantly told by parents or the older generation that social media is corrupt, it’s not good for you, it’s a waste of time, etc. Which everyone rolls their eyes at and just takes a deep sigh because it’s the same thing repeatedly. While it may be annoying to listen to, there are certain things we see on a daily basis that can really change what we view or how we want to live our life, it’s almost like a red stain on a white shirt, it’s almost impossible to get rid of once it’s in there.  

The false reality is right in front of us. 

Photo Credit: The Wall Street Journal 

People nowadays do not have an opinion of their own, it is just what someone heard and saw that many people agreed with and just made it their own; it’s as if someone felt that they can’t make an opinion of their own because they’ve been so desensitized to just gain other people’s thoughts and views, that they’ve lost their own ability to do that themselves. While quite a few personal thoughts and opinions are quite beneficial and have a good morale background, there are also those that are corrupt and vile to say on the internet.  

Some people know that certain nonsense shouldn’t be agreed with, and it shouldn’t have even been said, but they forget that if you give off an intelligent demeanor, or you have a lifestyle that people seek, or the way you use your words to convince others that your opinion is fact, it’s so easy to manipulate a way someone thinks about a topic that you just discussed. It’s easier to teach hate rather than love, especially on the thing we use most every single day, our phones,” says Raymond Clark.  Being in an environment that I can’t focus on or that bores me, I’ll go to the thing that provides me some kind of entertainment, my phone.” The average time spent on social media is 147 minutes, or two-hours and 27 minutes a day for the average person, but for teenagers it’s 7.7 hours a day of screen time. It may not seem like a lot but that’s plenty of time to brainwash or desensitize someone to what they see, what they hear, what they believe.  

“Why isn’t there just one answer?” 

Photo Credit: Yale Medicine 

It’s almost scary how fast someone can change their whole mind about something just because they heard someone they admire, or find interesting say something about it, and once someone feels as though they are right about it or have a point, it is incredibly hard to change someone’s mind or just get them to hear you out once they’ve latched onto that point of view or thought process.  

People will argue that it’s the environment that they grow up with that shapes them to who they are today, it’s how they’re parents raised them and what to believe; while that may be true, people tend to forget that it’s also who you hang around with, it’s how you take in information, it’s what you absorb online and what the social media algorithm feeds to you depending on what you’ve watched and showed interest in before, it’s the sense of control over your own thoughts that someone lets it get out of control. A friend of mine, Jojo Muhammad, stated “I definitely spend most of my time on social media but I follow things that would make me laugh but every now and then I get a controversial topic on my page that I didn’t want to see be talked about.” 

Someone could be born with extreme privilege, a stable financial living situation, great parents, the privilege of getting a proper education, being able to get what you want without consequences or worry; someone could have it all, but once they hit that download button or start gaining friends with different upbringings, that someone’s personality and view of life can change within two months of having those things. They could either be the best version of themselves or the devil walking the earth. 

 Not all the information out there is corrupt and filled with hatred, but be weary of what you’re listening to, really seek the real meaning behind what someone is trying to say. Keep your right to make your own decisions and opinions. 

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