When discussing social media and how it relates to privacy issues, we must first define
the term itself. Social networking is a popular form of communicating with friends around the
corner and around the world. It has become one of the top forms of communication even above
the phone. With the benefit of global communication, however, come risks and negative impacts.
Another privacy issue is hacking. Because social networks do not offer security measures for
their users, many of the computers used by networkers are vulnerable to hackers.
One of the greatest impacts of social networking is on the social skills of networkers.
Older generations of networkers learned how to communicate and interact long before
networking was even a thought, but much of the younger generations do not interact socially
except at school and work, where social interaction is well monitored and minimal (Mooradian,
2009). Social networking has created a serious breach in the ability of young people to
communicate and interact with each other (McCrary, 2001). Children no longer play together;
they network. Adults no longer seek physical companionship; instead, they choose to network
and have little or no physical contact. Networks are a playing field for computer viruses
Social networking can impact health. The less a person moves the more weight that
person is likely to gain, and few calories are being burned while sitting in front of a computer
(Cohen, 2013). Computer monitors have been proven to cause eye strain, leading to poor
eyesight. Little movement has been proven to lead to muscle weakness, less muscle development
and, in some cases, bone loss (Mooradian, 2009). Back, neck, and joint pain have been
associated with too much computer use. Social networkers often spend hours networking,
leading to weight and health issues (McCrary, 2001).
Like all things, social networking can be beneficial in moderation. Unfortunately,
moderation and networking do not coincide in today’s society. Social networking allows for
unnecessary risks in privacy, safety, social skills, and health (Mooradian, 2009). Networking, at
best, offers such ease of communication that social skills deteriorate, and at worst, is dangerous
for children and networkers unaware of the predators lurking in the network (Cohen, 2013).
Along with the ability to hack is the ability to plant viruses. Many viruses today are passed
through social networks, often undetected. Every bit of information on a networker’s computer
becomes available to those skilled in this science, often without the knowledge of the networker