Literature Review: The Effect of Social Media


The effect of social media on young people is a hot topic today. Ever since the advent of social media, there have been concerns about its effect on people and the country overall, and these concerns continue today. Social media has the potential to have a good impact on people’s lives in various ways, and it may also aid in the growth of businesses that make effective use of it. According to Gentile & Eisenmann (2017), more than 90% of teenagers in the US have a social media account. The effect of social media on teenagers is high due to their level of exposure. A survey carried out by Ostic et al. (2021) revealed that teenagers spend more time on social media than most other age groups. This review evaluates the effect of social media on teenagers ages 13 to 17. Many people believe that the negatives of social media outweigh the positive side, and social media should be banned for people aged 13 to 17.

It is true that when utilized in the wrong manner, social media has the potential to negatively affect people as well as society as a whole. However, the advantages of social media for teenagers between the ages of 13 to 17 are that it gives them the capacity to speak instantly to mentors worldwide. Direct engagement with a varied set of role models with whom they might not otherwise have contact and increased learning opportunities. According to Drahošová & Balco (2017), communication is one of the most beneficial aspects of using social media today. The disadvantage of social media for people ages 13 to 17 is the link to cyberbullying. This age group is vulnerable to internet abuse and oppression. Suicides have risen substantially in recent years due to the rise in cyberbullying. The advantages of social media to teenagers far outweigh its drawbacks.

Literature Review Preface

According to Drahošová & Balco (2017), to completely comprehend social media’s effect in our world today, one should first examine how social media is utilized. People and humanity altogether may and do benefit from social media, as evidenced by a study of numerous good aspects of the medium. Recently, the negative effects of social media have been in the headlines and the focus of multiple study articles and academic studies on the topic (Beyens et al., 2020).

Literature Review Body

History and Terminology

Social media encompasses a wide range of technological platforms in various configurations. Linkedin, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook are the social media platforms that most people are most familiar with. However, multiple other platforms are worth checking out, such as Reddit, Hive, Steemit, and Quora, for forums and discussions (Beyens et al., 2020). Mixcloud, Spotify, and Audiomack facilitate music interest. There are many other ones for people who have specific interests such as the environment, business, politics, etc. There are also numerous other social media and blogging platforms available, which enable users to create social networks to exchange information, images, thoughts, ideas, messages, and other sharable content. Since the advent of social media in the early 2000s, the number of people using it has increased exponentially (Aichner et al., 2021). The number of people using the internet is increasing across all age categories. The majority of users utilize well over two different platforms every day, and this usage is expected to increase as more people acquire access to social media networks.

The Pros of Social Media

In response to the increasing number of teenagers who have access to social media, multiple channels are creating sites that are appealing to them. For example, YouTube provides a specifically built platform for young children, which is known as YouTube Kids. Parents can specify the age range and access level that their kids are permitted to have. This platform is excellent because it contains videos that assist young kids in developing their vocabulary knowledge (Gentile & Eisenmann, 2017). There are movies available that teach literacy and numeracy in a way that helps these teenagers retain their information more effectively. Parental monitoring is now available on many social media education platforms allowing parents to see their children’s progress. Then efforts can be directed toward further improving that ability, with the prospect that they will eventually become excellent at it. Another advantage is its ability to communicate with people worldwide and share important information.

Because of social media, the globe appears to be a lot smaller. Someone could easily send a direct message to someone on the opposite side of the planet with only a few clicks. No time in history has made it easier to meet new people than today (Aichner et al., 2021). This is primarily due to the proliferation of social networking websites. It is quite easy to make “friends” with people never met in person when using social media platforms. Even though they are not friends in the traditional sense, they are friends nevertheless since one spends lots of time with them daily or weekly through social networking sites. Through this process, both parties understand one another and what they may have in common. Simple communication is an effective illustration of social media’s benefits.

The Cons of Social Media

There are some drawbacks to using social media as a medium of communication. A growing number of teenagers are getting exposed to a significant increase in online harassment, bullying, and stalking (Botou & Marsellos, 2018). Between 2011 to 2020, suicide was second place on the list of the top ten primary causes of fatalities and death in the age range of 10 to 24, with a significant number occurring between the ages of 13 and 17 (Miron et al., 2019). However, the new focus on the association between cyberbullying and suicide is beneficial because it contributes to raising awareness about the serious harm that bullying does to teenagers. It also underlines the significant risk that faces the most vulnerable teenagers, including those who have any form of disability or who are distinctive. Ostic et al. (2021). Identity theft is another danger related to using social media platforms. Millions of people worldwide have seen their private information posted on the internet. Many people have suffered significant consequences as a result, with some getting their privacy compromised.


Since its birth, social media has had a significant impact on our culture and the rest of the globe. It is going to keep expanding rapidly as more people make use of the numerous platforms that are now available and the additional ones that are being added to the internet every year. There are several advantages to using it, from communication to education to research. The disadvantages of cyberbullying, identity theft, and stalking are just a few issues. The majority of people and companies use social media for positive purposes. However, a significant number of individuals use it for bad purposes. The effect that social networking has on communities varies substantially due to the interactions between these two groups. As is true of most things, there undoubtedly are advantages and disadvantages to social media. However, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. Using social network platforms in moderation is the way to combat the negativities. They must be censored and monitored for teenagers.


Aichner, T., Grünfelder, M., Maurer, O., & Jegeni, D. (2021). Twenty-Five Years of Social Media: A Review of Social Media Applications and Definitions from 1994 to 2019. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking24(4), 215–222.

Baglari, H., & N, S. (2020). Social media use patterns among youth: implication for social media literacy. Mental Health and Addiction Research, 5(1).

Beyens, I., Pouwels, J. L., van Driel, I. I., Keijsers, L., & Valkenburg, P. M. (2020). The effect of social media on well-being differs from adolescent to adolescent. Scientific Reports10(1).

Botou, A., & Marsellos, P. S. (2018). Teens’ Perception of Social Networking Sites: Does Facebook Influence Teens’ Self-Esteem? Psychology09(06), 1453–1474.

Drahošová, M., & Balco, P. (2017). The analysis of advantages and disadvantages of the use of social media in the European Union. Procedia Computer Science, 109, 1005–1009.

Gentile, D. A., & Eisenmann, J. C. (2017). Protective Effects of Parental Monitoring of Children’s Media Use. JAMA Pediatrics, 168(5), 479.

Miron, O., Wilf-Miron, R., & Kohane, I. S. (2019). Suicide Rates Among Adolescents and Young Adults in the United States, 2000–2017. JAMA321(23), 2362.

Ostic, D., Herzallah, A. M., & Liu, F. (2021). Effects of Social Media Use on Psychological Well-Being: A Mediated Model. Frontiers in Psychology, 12.

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