Social media plays a significant role in the lives of Americans. Today it is rare to come across an individual who doesn’t use a single social media platform. Social media is used on a broad scale. From the entertainment apps such as Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, to the business professional apps like LinkedIn and Indeed, most will have a profile on one or more of these networks. The networks listed above can be accessed through computers, tablets, and smartphones.
Everyone has access to the use of social media apps. There is no age requirement for most entertainment apps, and if there is, it’s hard to prove the age of the user if they can select a birth year when they register. It’s crucial that parents, teachers, coaches, and other adult figures educate their kids and players on the risks associated with social media.
Privacy settings are encouraged for social media accounts. When a social media profile is set to private, this means only friend accounts or accepted friend requests by the administrator have the ability to see the account. There are many predators on the internet and fake accounts used to create a negative influence on younger social media users.
Even if users set their social profiles to private, it’s important to note and stress to young users that nothing on the internet is ever 100% private. What individuals post or like on social media can say a lot about them from an outsider’s perspective. “Liking” a post can be just as dangerous as making and publishing a post. When users like a post, this usually means they enjoyed the post, or they agree with it. Keep in mind that even if you didn’t post it, a “like” could still be interpreted a certain way by an outsider.