My Name Is Jess and I’m a Social Media-holic

BREAKING NEWS. A study done at The University of Maryland shows that students are addicted to social media.

….Wait a second, we needed a study to prove this??

It is no secret that social media outlets run our lives.  Whether it Facebook, Twitter, or the variations trying to prove their worth (what up, MySpace?), we are constantly connected.  Even on the go, we can count on our trusty iPhones and Blackberrys to bring these outlets to us.

But back to the study. The participants were forced to go one entire day without media of any kind and then blog their feelings when the 24-hour period was up. (Seems a little counter-intuitive, no?) Those who made it through (not surprisingly, some did not) reported that although surrounded by people, they felt completely isolated.

“Texting and IM-ing my friends gives me a constant feeling of comfort,” wrote one student. “When I did not have those two luxuries, I felt quite alone and secluded from my life. Although I go to a school with thousands of students, the fact that I was not able to communicate with anyone via technology was almost unbearable.”

At first glance, that student seems rather pathetic. But think about it: most of us can easily relate to the feeling. Whenever something happens, many of us instantly turn to Facebook or Twitter to share it. That’s why sites like that, and others like TFLN, exist. We are constantly sharing with others and every time a new outlet pops us that allows us to do so, we hop on board. It’s gotten to the point that if some worthy (or even unworthy) news event is not on Facebook, it is as if it never happened.

When my power went out during a windstorm last month, the thing I was most upset about was that I could not log onto to Facebook to update my status with, “NO POWER? WTF?” I felt lost and without a clue. How could I possibly get through this blackout without hearing my friends comments pertaining to my unfortunate situation?? And without Internet access, what was I supposed to do to pass the time?

Pathetic? Maybe. True? Absolutely.

For the angered few who disagree with me/are judging me as you read this, you will probably proceed to comment on this blog expressing your opposing view, thus further proving my point. You feel your voice needs to be heard, and unless you post it, it is not.

I mean, just look at the article on The Huffington Post; it’s flooded with irony on the subject.  Under the headline is a link to Facebook to give readers a chance to blog about the topic.  When opened, there is a beauty ad directly on top.  Bordering the ad is the option to “like” this product before any of your friends, and additional links to tweet and buzz about it.  The last sentence begs readers to share their feelings: “Do these findings surprise you? Could you go 24 hours without social media?” And following this conclusion: Get HuffPost College on Twitter!

One article, 3 opportunities to connect to others regarding the one article.

Oh, the irony.  The truth is, study or no study, we are addicted, and there is no form of rehab that could even begin to pull us out.

Duke It Out: Preventative Botox
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