I was around the tender age of ten when I first logged onto a computer without adult supervision. Way back when, MySpace was the go-to social media source. Knowing what I was about to do was wrong, or at least according to my parents, I began to create my new identity. I discovered all the intriguing and unique themes available, the anxiety that comes with choosing the right profile picture and forming a bio that would make me seem somewhat appealing. Well, to say the very least, it was love at first social media site.
As I continued to build my page, I would add friends, strangers, anything to get my followers number and profile views to increase. I seriously thought I was going to become one of those crazy reality stars who were discovered on MySpace and went on to host their own television show. My ten year old self became so wrapped up in this new virtual reality that when I stumbled upon my uncle’s profile, I uncovered a completely different side of him- the social media side. He had listed in his biography some of the most vulgar, disgusting things I had ever read. Was this what MySpace condoned I wandered. The farther I scrolled, the more traumatized I became. After the initial shock and horror wore off, I deleted my account the same day I created it and decided right then and there that maybe my parents aren’t always wrong.
The moral of my story is never underestimate the ability of the internet. Technology has the power to connect people and/or destroy their lives all in one click. In all its glamour, glory and mystery, social media is really what keeps our society connected. In this day and age, complete strangers separated by oceans can connect within seconds all thanks to the handy dandy Internet. With its perks also comes the disadvantages, such as catfishing. This can be easily defined as a individual who creates a fake profile and engages in a virtual relationship based on the falsehood of identity. Speaking of identity, that is one thing that the Internet does offer… a sense of a new beginning, a clean slate. Although your average Joe can do some digging and research information that you never would dream of being accessible to the public- but it is. Online shopping can become dangerous territory when you give your credit card and personal information to a website, it is automatically saved no matter what their policy may say.
Internet hackers have been around since the creation of computers and technology, so just be aware of everything you post for the world to see. There is truly no delete button. Everything you post to social media or look up on your favorite search engine is on record. Times are ever evolving, as well as technology. So the next time you feel like creating a new you, think twice about who it really effects and the actual outcome you want out of your social media experience.