Most of us are born right after 1995 are considered to be Generation Z. Gen Z is a generation that is very exposed to social media and technology and don’t realize the harm that it is starting to cause to the world outside of social media. Although social media in an aspect protects us by giving us knowledge of upcoming events, it also has its downsides.
Compared to previous generations, Gen Z is less likely to go to mall or see a movie and are more likely to spend hours on Instagram and Facebook. Because of the strong use of technology, this generation has less “in person” and “face to face” contact with others leading to higher suicide rates.
Snapchat is a common application that is used by the current generation and the upcoming. An eighth grader from a middle school located in Maryland was suspended for three weeks and did not get to graduate with his class in June because he appeared in a Snapchat holding up an air-soft gun.
Although it was air-soft gun, schools approach even the hint of a gun very seriously. Tensions are high with the media pushing the idea that we have a mass shooting epidemic going on, but should there be some sensibility among administrators. That’s not likely to happen with the ongoing stigmatization of guns and gun ownership. There’s been enough fear that now people see a gun-shaped object and freak out. That’s something that needs to be fixed.
Many researchers and politicians encourage us to remain afraid of media, and children themselves. Of course children will always be the most vulnerable of people, it does not mean we do not have something positive to learn from them. It seems that there is a constant power struggle and negative eye turned towards the youth, which today includes their media usage.
Instagram is considered to be the most unhealthy for mental health associated with high levels of anxiety, depression, bullying, and Fomo (fear of missing out). Youtube is considered to be the only social media that has a net positive effect on mental health.