October 14, 2020

The Impact Of Social Media On Children


Being the digital natives we grow up with the growing technology. In this era of growing IT we are materially elevated. The technology has advanced our material culture but on the other side it has freezed our biggest treasure i.e our abstract culture. We have loss the traditional patterns which were humanising the humanity. Today when a child is born unexperienced & fearful. The fear of the novel sensations that his body experiences and during that time a child needs to be taken care with love and affection. But, the technology have affectionately paralysed us and today instead of patting a child with the love and affection, he is being manipulated by the gadgets & by the growing electronic devices. What it yeilds? It later-on develops in him/her the love for the technology instead of love for the humans. Because psychologists says; during the initial stages a child’s mind is highly sensitive and flexible towards learning. The day a child is born every single sensation that happens to him/her affects his behaviour and his/her personality, which later on gets manifested through his actions either consciously or unconsciously. Regarding the mind the famous english philosopher JOHN LOCKE has said “human mind is a ‘Tabula Rasa’ i.e, a blank slate”. which means we are born without innate knowledge, with an empty mind and the behaviour that a person reflects are the impressions of the cultural and social experiences. Whatever a child learns from his/her environment reflects back through his behaviour. Today we are facing the moral and ethical issues common among the young generation. Its because in this digital era we inculcate the technical values to our young ones instead of teaching them human values like morality, truth, love. That’s why the teachers, parents and other members have lost their worth & dignity that they had before this digital era. Because of the technology the teachers & parents have loss the authority and elders are being criticized for keeping traditional & primitive attitudes. Its because technology have advanced us unconditionally. It has erased all the demarcations that the traditional societies had. It has legalized the illegality. Technology facilitates us all the needs & demand and makes a person self-sufficient and that self-sufficiency without ethics leads to the ignorance. Sowing the nettles can’t bring us roses and fragrance. Remember that none is born good or bad, intellect or moron its all the environment which shapes the personality of a person. Technology is not a curse but a blessing for humanity, but the man’s greed and the lust of power & wealth have poisioned this blessing and have changed it into a poisioned honey. The honey in appearance and the poision in effect I.e the knowledge and the evil contents on the same page.
Technology is a blessing to us & inventor can’t be blamed, but the user should be mature ethically sound. The uses should be for the upliftment of the society, not for the degradation and for the onset of the social evils.
As Allama Iqbal has rightly said:

“hai dil ke liye moat machinoun ki hakumat,
“ehsaas e marawat ko kuchal dete hai alaat”

Now coming to the actual topic of social media no doubt it’s a good source of information. It has abundance of uses for a man. But to a child it’s a hazard. It’s a double edged sword. Besides the benefits it also has its repercussions. “Social Media” simply is any website that allows any type of ‘virtual social interaction’. Social media has reduced the world into a global village whereby a person can introduce himself/herself by a single click. It is a good source of knowledge whereby a person can learn various types of arts, facts & information. But for a child its only a tool for fun and in the child’s authority it can turn into a calamity. As the child lacks ethical vision he doesn’t know what is society and what is spirit, what to practice & what not to and in absence of ethical knowledge that guides our behavior social media can have adverse effect over a child. A human being is the product of both good and evil characters, besides goodness we entail ill-desires (which sigmund freud has called ‘id’ in his theory of personality development) which persuade us according to the situation. An adult is conscious about the social & spiritual ethics and can control his ill-actions but a child who can’t differentiate between good & evil. Who doesn’t know what is society and what is spirit dominance of that id or satanic mind can mislead him/her, because pleasure is the sole aim of a child. in this way a a child can fall prey to a fallancy because social media is free of demarcations and anything can be accessed or posted, it can make life grievous & regretful. If we ourselves are enhancing their ill-desires then expecting good is unfair and getting ready for the adversity is fairness. The situation then can’t only effect a child but the whole members. Every human is the slave of his/her desires, it’s the desire that drive us. Having the need and satisfaction at the same time in an isolation can put fuel to flares. The adult contents in every online site can ruin the life of a child if not taken care properly. Adultery destroys our potential, our ability, our unique talents and dismantles us, once it becomes addiction. It drains all of our positive energies and burns down our moral values leaving us the bare animals. As our prominent hero Sallahu-din-ayyubi has quotes: “if u want to destroy any nation without war, make adultery common among the young generation”. Researches say today 30-40% of children & teens in our Kashmir are addicted towards narcotic drugs like marijuana & drug-injections but to their parents they are normal & innocent. More than 50% are the addicted towards pornography. It’s because of the technology which breaks the child’s latency. Children are the future of a nation, if they are guided properly the peace & progress can be attained and if they are mislead then violence is inevitable. One more well-know downside of social media is the addiction it creates. Regularly checking the news feeds and notifications becomes an addiction. Experts think that some features such as likes, comments and shares actives the highly sensitive reward centre i.e the release of dopamine in a brain, which influences our mood and behavior instantly. But, this addiction disrupts childs other activities, such as school work, studies and mental health. Using facebook is also know to lead to a decline in the subjective well-being of the youngsters. It makes their lives dissatisfied in general, while comparing their lives with their friends. While making use of social media sometimes a childs feelings may get hurted and he may be fooled as fakeness is the another name of social media. Sometimes a child can get in touch with robbers and fraudesters. Besides this an immature can be blackmailed or indoctrinated and the families life and diginty can come under threat. I am concluding with a message that: there is no problem in making use of technology. Technology is a blessing to us & inventor can’t be blamed, but the user should be mature ethically sound. The uses should be for the upliftment of the society, not for the degradation and for the onset of the social evils. Allow the children to make use of gadgets, but in offline mode and under the surveillience. The child if needed should be given access to online contents only while making use of firewalls and other surveillence softwares. Only give freedom to a child when he gets ethically ripened. Make proper & sustainable use of every blessing, before it will be snached.
(The author is a student at Central University Kashmir. Views are his own) [email protected]

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