Impact of Social Media on Social Interactions

As we are all probably aware now, social medial impacts our personal everyday lives. We use social media to communicate with one another without needing to be within close proximity of each other – allowing for constant communication from anywhere in the world.

If we did not have social media, we would need to interact with each other in person to have any social interaction at all. Therefore, social media has definitely impacted the way we socially interact online but also in person.

Social Media and In Person Interactions

For example, we would use our social media to communicate with someone about meeting them in person. Then, when we meet this person, it is likely that we are still consumed by our social media on our devices to a certain extent. Personally, when I am accompanied by someone, I keep my phone usage to a minimum so I can live in the present moment. This article is helpful in understanding how limiting your screen time can help you live in the present moment.

However, it is quite normal to take a Snapchat/Instagram story while with other people to show to your followers. It is normal to use your social media when with someone just as much as you would when you are alone. The impact here that social media has on our social interactions makes time spent together seem less important/meaningful if one is always consumed by what is happening online. It is almost like they would rather be on social media alone than be with you, which can hurt. The picture below is a good example of this.

“Someone’s email is better than someone else’s … at Orlando airport” by Ed Yourdon is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

The Impact of Social Media Prior to Meeting Someone

There is also the way that social media impacts our social interactions prior to meeting someone. For example, have you ever come across someone’s Instagram profile one day and then seen them the next day out of coincidence? Your first impression of this person comes from their online persona which impacts the way you see them in real life – even if you have not met them yet. You may feel like they are not someone you want to interact with in person at all after seeing their online persona first; resulting in you avoiding them in person at all costs. However, if you did not see their Instagram profile prior, you would not have any beliefs about them which would allow you to have an open mind and potentially become friends with them. 

This also works the other way around. Maybe someone’s online persona attracts you and makes you want to meet them and so you initiate a conversation – leading to eventually meeting them in person and building a friendship/relationship.

A Suggestion while Scrolling

With this in mind, I truly think it is important to remember that things online are the highlights of people’s lives since they are choosing to showcase it to the world. I suggest practicing having a filter while scrolling through social media to avoid your opinion of someone being biased before you meet them.


Facebook: Have you let someone’s post bias your opinion of them before you even met them? bit.ly/2K4pE7L

Twitter: Do you put your phone aside when with company? Or at least try to? #limitscreentime bit.ly/2K4pE7L

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