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Peer Pressure and Social Media

social media

Social media adds an entirely new level to peer pressure.

On top of dealing with the stress of fitting in at school through sports and other activities, teens now have to navigate life in an online world. Parents remain largely unaware that these sites are causing undue stress on their kids. To begin to understand, here are the top social media sites used by teens. And brief insight on why they are problematic.

Instagram

Allows users to share photos and short videos publicly or privately with followers. Teens are beginning to define their self-worth based on the number of ‘likes’ they receive on Instagram posts and the number followers they have.

Twitter

Allows users to post 140 character tweets about anything that comes to mind. Followers can retweet, favorite, reply and quote tweets. Tweets can be deleted, the impulsive nature of teens to act first and think later often results in peer conflict and social consequences.

Snapchat

A messaging app that allows users to send private pictures and videos that are automatically deleted upon receipt. Snapchat recently added an option for users to post a “story” which is viewable for 24 hours by all followers. The ability to control when an image “goes away” leads users to send inappropriate images that they otherwise may not send. Many of these are suggestive or indecent photos or videos that qualify as child pornography.

Vine

Allows users to create 6-second clips that can be edited and posted privately or publicly. Vine has thousands of video posts that show drug use, nudity, and illegal activity.

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