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Social Media, Risk Factors and the Youth

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I need some thoughts and ideas on the impact of media and of social media on today's youth. Please see attached.

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Dear Student,
Hi there, thank you for your patience. A 10-page paper requires around 2,000 plus words. The subject you wanted to focus on is social media and the youth. Since this is a developmental psychology paper - I am supposing that it is related to another part of your studies - risky behaviors and youth deviance. If you are to explore this subject you need to focus on a subject to delve on. There are many ways in which such a paper can be explored. Below, I have made a suggestion on how this can be done. I suggest using this simple outline:

1. Overview - 200 words
2. On Social Media - 200 words
3. Youth - the social stage of development - 200 words
4. Language & development - 200 words
5. Youth issues - 200 words
6. Risk Factors to deviance - 200 words
7. Risk factor focus (choose 1) - 200 words
8. Relate social media to risk factor - 200 words
9. Discussion & Example for #8 - 400 words

This should give you the 2000 words that you need for this task. You can use the listed resources to further explore the topic. Just let me know via the feedback section if you need further clarification. All the best with your studies.

Social Media and the Youth: Risk Factors

According to sociologist Mark Smith (2003), culture is a way of life. If culture is that set of practices, beliefs, ways of doing, thinking and behaving that is established overtime in a social setting shared by a group of people who identify with each other and with the set, then it is valid to say that within virtual social sites, among social groups communicating, mingling and taking part in activities online (i.e. a gaming group, a hacking group), their members take up and perpetuate behaviors and worldviews shared online with each other in their larger, real, day-to-day life. Fort so many, being online is not a choice but a daily reality as we work, play, socialize, learn, get connected and updated with our world through the internet. Many of us maintain active social media accounts on sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to update ourselves with what is going on in the lives of our friends and family and to take part in activities that we like to do (i.e. play online massive multiplayer social games) or read about people and subjects we like (i.e. going to CNN news site or on lifestyle/showbiz sites like E!) or watch videos that can cheer us up, watch the latest news streams or share media of our own on sites like YouTube and Dailymotion.

With easy access to smartphones, today's teens quite easily fit within these descriptions too. And, being in that particular stage of development from 12-18 where ego identity is in conflict with the roles that they have to take up in school, among their peer groups, at home and around the community (including social roles in their 'online' lives), the presence of factors and in influences that can bar the youth from achieving a sense of fidelity (that is, a healthy sense of self) can lead to a sense of confusion and the inability to cope with notions of self-identity and a feeling of displacement in the larger society. With wherever the youth is, in their 'real' life, or online - there are consequential impact to his development. In social media, his friends, individuals he encounters, activities he does, information he or she receives - all this impact the youth being a social subject just as the youth is a social agent of influence to his peer group and to those he is in contact with. In other words, the world of social media is a site of socialization, an agency of development that can impact the youth positively or negatively dependent on what is being imbibed, what behaviors and views are being shared and enforced. Here we discuss the impact of social media on youth development and the risk factors associated to deviance and delinquency related to social media.

On Social Media

First let us define social media. Facebook is Social media, and so is Google, Yahoo, Instagram, Twitter. In fact, websites and online systems that allow for social impact, communication, discourse and integration to share ideas and information is a form of social media. Sprout Social (2015), developers of social media platforms for businesses define social media as such, "Social Media is the future of communication, a countless array of internet based tools and platforms that increase and enhance the sharing of information. This new form of media makes the transfer of text, photos, audio, video, and information in general increasingly fluid among internet users. Social Media has relevance not only for regular internet users, but business as well. Platforms like twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn have created online communities where people can share as much or as little personal information as they desire with other members. The result is an enormous amount of information that can be easily shared, searched, promoted, disputed, and created." If you think about it in another way, social media are online tools that allow us to extend our lives into the virtual world to communicate and share information faster, sharing ourselves and knowing of others in real time without the boundaries of geography and time differences. And because we 'spend' time on social media - we check our accounts regularly, we connect to friends and family, and even if we ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides information, assistance and advise in tackling the task (see above) on the topic of putting together an extensive paper on social media and the youth in relation to risk factors and negative outcomes. Resources are listed for further exploration of the topic.