Is Social Media the new way to connect?

As I scroll through my various social media accounts including Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, I am bombarded by pictures of fine dining, luxury bags and shoes, exclusive restaurants and private clubs, exotic vacation spots, beautiful homes amongst others…From the accounts I view on social media, it appears the whole world is beautiful with everyone living their lives to the fullest….The more time I spend on social media, the more I want to be on it…..

Many times, I have been out to dinner with a friend or family member and found myself on social media as we await our food or drinks…Atimes I insist we take pictures so I can post a picture of us on social media stating how much fun we are having at a particular location…
Am I the only one that does this? I doubt it…..I have been in restaurants and seen couples that appear to be on a date, yet they are both on phones…The nervousness that is usually associated with first dates is minimised as the couple on a date can spend the time on social media instead of talking….I have seen families at a dinner table with everyone on their phones…(The Image below is a great illustration)

phonestoo.jpg

(Image 1) Culled from Pinterest

It appears our phones has created a safe haven for us all…both for introverts and extroverts…We can all sit behind our phones and computers and put up pictures and videos, we can view various post by others online…we can make new friends with strangers all over the world…We can become popular online and have a separate life the one we have in reality…

Social Media creates an opportunity to live in fantasy world and makes the world a global village…While this is great with the fact that we can connect with so many people around the world, yet it appears to pose a huge risk with the fact that we fail to connect with people in our lives and people around us…We are having less face to face interactions and instead yearn for the exciting world of social media….We are endangering our lives with use of phones while driving, with use of phones while walking on the roads…..It is almost like becoming a zombie when the smart phone is in our possession….

It was my birthday just yesterday and I did have a great time with lots of family and friends coming over to spend the day with me. I had a photographer come around to capture many of the great moments…But even as we sat down and enjoyed ourselves, i found myself wanting to create Instagram Stories where I could show what was happening…where I could show the display of food, cards, presents, friends that came around. It appeared there was a need to let my ‘friends’ on the internet know my day was going great….Why is this the case? Why do we feel the need to update social media about what we do?

Has social media become the new way of connecting with friends? Btw I did have a great time and there is a picture below from the party…(There I go again!!!..Remember I did say in my first blog that I love pictures..Well I wasn’t lying)

 

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(Image 2) Ayo Edwards Photography

Some of my friends that came spent a lot of time on social media as well…updating friends about their location and what was happening…taking pictures and uploading on Instagram…It appears this is the new way of connecting and communicating with friends. Perhaps face to face communication might be minimised or seize to exist in the near future..?.

Do you find yourself spending more and more time on social media? Has the quality of time you spend with family and friends been impacted by social media? How do you think we could manage our use of social media without negatively affecting our communicating with the people around us?

facebook Is social media the new way to connect with friends? What are your thoughts?

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twitter Will social media replace face to face communication? Any risks to this? #socialmediarisks   http://wp.me/p3QRy0-ig4

References:

  1. Image from Pinterest
  2. Image from Ayo Edwards Photography  19.10.2017
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Has Science Gone too Far?

Recently I was discussing Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) with some friends and we argued for and against it. PGD is linked to IVF and refers to the procedure to identify defects, diseases or conditions prior to embryo transfer.

During the IVF procedure, the embryo is tested for specific conditions and the couple can decide if they want to discard the embryos if it tests positive for the condition they are concerned about. For example, if a family is concerned about Down Syndrome, sickle cell anaemia, neurofibromatosis or cystic fibrosis, they can test if the embryos has the condition and therefore decide not to use the embryo. In some clinics or certain countries, they may not be provided that choice as their policy is that they will automatically not select that embryo that tests positive for the concerned condition but will either discard it or use it for clinical research.

We argued about the morality of this approach of PGD. Some argued from the faith point of view and the fact that science shouldn’t be playing God. People shouldn’t be able to choose what type of child they get and God should be the only one deciding. If an embryo has a birth defect, then that means it was meant to be. They say that embryos shouldn’t be destroyed as that is in effect killing a life and each child should be given a chance. The fact that a child has a condition doesn’t mean the parents should love them less and besides, no one knows what great things that child could have achieved in this world. Some of the most famous, inspiring or talented people in history have had one condition or the other.

I argued that it wasn’t so easy only looking at it from this faith or moral prism. People dealing with a situation usually have a hard time deciding to opt for PGD. While growing up, I have known friends that had sickle cell anaemia and many have died. It was very traumatic for a lot of them as they experienced painful crisis a lot of the time and this was hard for their friends and family to watch them in so much pain. No one wants a child to be born into pain and suffering especially in a society where they can be stigmatised or even bullied for their condition. Raising a child with a severe condition can also put a lot of strain on a couple’s relationship or marriage and people say couples raising severely handicapped children have a tendency to split up due to the pressure that the required care puts on their relationships. If a couple who are carriers of the sickle cell gene watched others with sickle cell crisis, they would most likely do everything in their power to prevent them bringing a child with the condition to this world. Likewise with conditions such as Down Syndrome or Tay Sachs. Some people, if they have seen the suffering of friends who have children with these conditions may chose PGD if there is a high likelihood that they may pass it on to their children.

PGS-vs-PGD.png

Sickle cell anaemia is a condition common to people of African descent and Asians. For everyone that is a carrier of the sickle cell gene, having a baby with another person who is also a carrier, will result in 25% chance of having a baby that has sickle cell anemia.

Of course, carriers of the gene can ensure they only get married to someone who is not a carrier to ensure they do not have the risk of having a child with sickle cell. But should that be their only option? What if a person that is a carrier falls in love with another people who is also a carrier? Should they not get married just because of this? Should they not have any children because of this? Or should their only option be to adopt?

It is never that easy to judge or criticise people’s decisions when looking in from the outside. Both sides have very powerful arguments. Certainly without a doubt, when an embryo is discarded, you are destroying a life and a potential. Virtually everyone knows someone with a serious condition and if you asked them whether they wish their loved one had never been born and been part of their lives, the answer would most likely be no. Therefore the faith based argument is understood. However so to is the point of view that if you can avoid untold suffering on a child or if a child has a condition with a short life span, then choosing not to bring that child into the world is the best for all parties including the parents. Clinical research on the embryo may even lead to a cure for future generations.

Of course, PGD can also be used to choose gender, hair and eye colour and other features in an embryos and these might be reasons people can do without. But in cases, where the qualify of life that the child might be subjected to is at stake, should we be able to judge and decide what’s best for them?

What are your thoughts? What is your opinion of PGD? Has science gone to far? Are faith and science mutually exclusive?

References:

Imaged Culled from: Genetic Testing. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.newhopefertility.com/genetic-testing/

facebook How far is too much? Should we be allowed to choose our children? http://wp.me/p3QRy0-hWj

twitter Designer Babies…Can you get to choose the traits for your child? #designerbabies #preimplantationgeneticdiagnosis http://wp.me/p3QRy0-hWj

 

Social Media and Obsession with Popularity in spite of Danger

Being popular on social media is a big deal and many people work hard to ensure they attain this popularity. The pressure is always on to be creative and have engaging posts that may go viral and have everyone talking about it.

A term on social media; Influencers refers to people who have enough loyal followers and can influence their followers to accept a new product or service. Influencers can suggest a product to their followers who will then be quick to try the new product and make great recommendations about it. For an organisation, influencers can be a valuable asset. Some people are paid by organisations to wear their product and post the images online in the hope of generating additional sales from the followers of the individual.

How does a person become an influencer? By posting engaging materials on social media and building a high number of followers. When an influencer posts an image or video, the followers are quick to like and comment on the posts. In the social media world, when a post generates a lot of likes or comments, it is something to be proud of. People like Kim Kardashian, Beyonce, Oprah Winfrey to name a few are examples of influencers. Any post by any of the above mentioned will generate thousands of likes in a few seconds.

Many non-celebrities and everyday people have become popular from their social media posts and platforms.  Each day, they work hard on having creative posts to keep their followers happy. In many cases, this need for creativity and obsession with becoming popular on social media has led to people to put their lives at risk just to get the perfect picture.  There are stories of people taking selfies high up on mountain cliffs, edges of bridges, etc. and many have lost their lives. There was a story in the news this year about a young couple who were recording a YouTube video where the girl shot her boyfriend who was holding a book to his chest. The book was supposed to act as a shield and prevent the bullet from killing him. Unfortunately, the bullet went through the book and  he was killed instantly.

Earlier this year in India, a man was killed while attempting to take a selfie on a railway track.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/hyderabad/man-crushed-to-death-while-attempting-selfie-before-moving-train/articleshow/58909101.cms

A lady was swept away to death after taking selfies in a river.

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/student-swept-to-her-death-by-dam-water-seconds-after-posing-for-selfies-in-new-zealand-river-a3461521.html

(Image Culled from: Evening Standard)

Two boys were found dead at the bottom of a cliff in UK in May of this year after apparently attempting to take selfies.

(Image: Robert Harding World Imagery)

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/teenagers-found-dead-bottom-cliff-10111769

Below is a link that has many more examples of deaths and accidents that have occurred while attempting to take pictures in spite of danger involved.

https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/evd85n/people-are-literally-dying-for-the-perfect-insta-pic

What is it about our society that makes us feel the need to become popular? It appears we are now concerned with attaining instant fame at all costs. Is it because of the reality TV shows and the fact that we have watched ordinary people become famous for just being famous? Or perhaps we have always been needy and felt the need to be recognised? Maybe the rise of social media has helped to highlight these problems. What can we do to change this trend? Is there anyway to stop this obsession or will it get worse? What are your thoughts?

 

References:

(The Vice.Com July 19, 2017) https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/evd85n/people-are-literally-dying-for-the-perfect-insta-pic

(Mirror UK 28th May 2017 ) http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/teenagers-found-dead-bottom-cliff-10111769

(The Times of India May 30, 2017) https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/hyderabad/man-crushed-to-death-while-attempting-selfie-before-moving-train/articleshow/58909101.cms

(The Evening Standard UK: February 8, 2017) https://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/student-swept-to-her-death-by-dam-water-seconds-after-posing-for-selfies-in-new-zealand-river-a3461521.html

 

Social Media and Obsession with popularity in spite of danger. What is the reason? http://wp.me/p3QRy0-hOs

Social Media and Obsession with popularity in spite of danger. What is the reason? http://wp.me/p3QRy0-hOs

My love for Travel & Photography

For as long as I can remember, being in airports has always excited me…Getting on a plane and travelling to a new city or country feels like the best thing ever…Each time I travel, I dream of sitting next to a person that will change my life…Before I got married, I always thought I might meet my life partner on a plane… That never happened!!!….

I love checking in to a hotel and changing into something more comfortable before getting out to explore my surrounding….I go into cafes, malls, little boutique shops…picking up little fridge magnets and other souvenirs that I can place in my home to remind me of the places I have been. I have travelled to many countries including USA, UK, France, Germany, UAE, Ghana, Nigeria, Switzerland, Austria, South Korea, China and many others.

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My camera always accompanies me…I have a passion for photography and capturing beautiful moments…When I was a little girl, I spent a fortune on buying films and printing pictures…Thank heavens for digital cameras and the ability to edit and delete pictures!!!

I could take pictures all day without getting tired…!!!..If there was a job I would do for free, it will be travelling to various destinations and exploring the  restaurants, shopping malls, museums, and other tourist centres and capturing beautiful places on my camera to share with the world on my blog….and yet, I do not do that for a living…!!!

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Currently, I work in Education Consulting, I advise students in Nigeria seeking to study abroad in countries like Canada, USA, UK, Hungary, Czech Republic and many others. Social media is critical in connecting with the many young students. Social media to me is a medium to express yourself online using words and images to capture people’s attention. I am active on Instagram/Facebook but I figured taking this course will help me to improve my understanding of social networking and the many benefits of it for an online business.

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