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The Modern Problem: Social Media Addiction

Social Media Addiction

The concept of internet addiction was first mentioned in the literature by Dr. It emerged with a joking e-mail sent by Ivan Goldberg. Later, different researchers used these concepts; internet addiction, pathological internet use, problematic internet use, intense internet use, internet abuse and irregular internet use. In general, this concept; It can be defined as the inability to prevent the desire to use, the loss of the importance of the time spent without being connected to the internet, the state of extreme irritability when deprived of use, the presence of aggression, and the gradual deterioration of the person’s work, social and family life.

The purposes of using the Internet are of great importance in terms of addiction and its possible consequences. Internet addicted users; While spending more time on sites such as movie-music sites, game sites, chat rooms, pornographic sites, community sites, users who are not addicted to the internet; they spend time on news, shopping and education sites.

On the other hand, users visit social media to do many different types of entertainment and social activities such as playing games, spending their free time, communicating and posting pictures. Although this situation is a popular leisure time activity, it has begun to be defined as addiction because of the consequences of excessive and compulsive use. Tablets, mobile phones and easy access to the internet by each staff member in the workplace exacerbate the development of addiction.

As interactions over social media become more common than face-to-face interactions, social media has begun to greatly affect individuals’ way of life, communication, language, interests and moods. Social media addiction and gender, age, loneliness, self-perception, self-confidence, personality traits, socialization needs and number of followers are among the subjects examined in the literature.

In the literature, there are findings that female gender, not being in a relationship, being a student, low education level and income level, low self-confidence and narcissism are significantly associated with social media addiction. Women are more addicted to social media to change their mood. The level of social media addiction exacerbates with the increase in the number of followers on social media. Especially for individuals with high narcissistic characteristics, social media is a gratifying one; it enables these individuals to show their achievements to a potentially large audience and to be highly visible by receiving positive comments from other social media users. Studies examining the relationship between loneliness and addiction show that loneliness positively predicts internet addiction.

There are studies showing a negative relationship between self-esteem levels and social media addiction. Fear of rejection was seen as the reason why students with low self-esteem prefer to use social media instead of face-to-face interactions. In addition, being anonymous and being able to hide the identity of the person reduces the anxiety of rejection and ridicule of individuals with an introverted personality trait and increases their dependence on online uses. These people see social media as a safer place to express themselves. In another study with contradictory findings, it is stated that extroverted individuals need to communicate more than introverted individuals, and therefore they use the internet more for interaction purposes. Faraon and Kaipainen (2014) also found that participants with high Facebook usage intensity reported lower self-esteem. Similarly, some other researchers have concluded that addictive social media use is associated with low self-esteem. If an individual feels that they are “unloved” or “have poor social skills”, but also believes that having a large number of friends or followers will alter such self-assessments, this may increase their addictive use of social media. Other researchers have also concluded that addictive social media use is associated with low self-esteem. If an individual feel that they are “unloved” or “have poor social skills”, but also believes that having a large number of friends or followers will alter such self-assessments, this may increase their addictive use of social media. Other researchers have also concluded that addictive social media use is associated with low self-esteem. If an individual feel that they are “unloved” or “have poor social skills”, but also believes that having a large number of friends or followers will alter such self-assessments, this may increase their addictive use of social media.

The use of social media can prevent both the satisfying and stressful experiences of individuals in real life. The individual should be able to experience the positive and negative experiences that life brings. Social media can become a virtual one that destroys the mechanisms of individuals to cope with their vital problems. The factors that cause the individual’s social media addiction should be identified and realistic coping mechanisms should be supported. Cl. Ps. Aylin Light