We spend most of our time using social media, to build up circles of friends or followers online and showcase mostly “perfect lives.”
It is a place where we can create public personas, ways in which we can present ourselves to the world. And it is a place that allows you to develop a web of connections with your friends, with seemingly endless ways to message or even call them and share images.
The vast majority of people my age, and certainly people younger than me, prefer to use short, quick sources of social media that only last a few seconds such as Snapchat, Vine, Twitter and so on.
Facebook: we still use it, but 14-year olds think it’s lame
Social media sites like Facebook are slowly growing out of fashion because many parents use it too. Besides you can do most of what Facebook has to offer on other apps.
That said we do not completely bypass it, because we all have Facebook accounts and we use it to message one another with group chats.
But I think we are some of the last people who will do this, because people not even two years below me at school think Facebook is “lame.” They prefer messaging apps such as Whatsapp and Snapchat.
Instagram and Snapchat: creative expression and personal updates
Instagram is the place for everyone I know to express their “creative” side and to share snap shots of their lives (coupled with a soft filter and white border. In truth, everyone conforms to exactly the same thing).
Snapchat “stories” offer us a more daily, less edited version of Instagram. We use our Snapchat stories to keep everyone informed on all the fun and exciting things we are doing before the updates are removed from our “stories” 24 hours later.
General news updates: notifications, thank you
When it comes to general news, in all honesty, I don’t know anyone who reads paper versions of newspapers anymore. The fact that everyone has immediate access to any news report, new or old, has removed the need for reading it in hard copy.
There are constant updates on news websites, such as the BBC and the Guardian, with notification features on our mobile phones that keep you updated on what’s being posted at all times of the day. This makes reading the news on paper seem almost a waste of time.
Printed magazines: don’t go the way of MSN and flip phones
Magazines are a little different, because they are a luxury. The euphoria I feel when flipping the glossy pages of my favourite magazines written in English can never be replaced.
Living in Switzerland (as a British citizen) brings many benefits just as it does difficulties. The lack of magazines written in English falls in the latter category. When a friend comes back from the UK with copies of the latest Hello! or – my personal favourite – Cosmopolitan, there is almost a fight to decide who gets to borrow it first!
Personally, in as much as technology is advancing and the world is becoming a digital hub of information, I sincerely hope that simply reading a print magazine or book doesn’t go extinct in the same way MSN or flip phones did.