We fear what we don’t understand

There is a strong rhetoric from those in power (executives, management, parents) that fear the next generation will be ruined by social media.

We’ve heard it before: “They are addicted to playing on their smart phones. It’s ruining them. They can’t look at each other in the eye. I am sure glad I had my childhood where we got to play outside without these distractions.”

Ten years ago, social media platforms were brand new. The world had never seen it before. Human beings had a new tool and weren’t sure what the purpose was or how to use it correctly. So like all new tools you get excited, play with it, exhaust it until it is no longer new. Social media is wearing off its “newness.”

We now have defined the purpose: it’s a tool to bring us closer together. When we are closer together we are more likely to solve interesting problems.

But we fear what we don’t understand. People will always use tools for the wrong purpose (watching cat videos). However, those in power that have more of their life behind them than in front of them can help us. They can teach us to search for more meaningful experiences but they will need to embrace social media for all the good it brings, not just the bad.

As more and more people globally adopt social media in their lives we will continue to see this shift for better content, design, and purpose that will ultimately lead us to stronger bonds – which is what we are looking for. We ALL want the same thing.