We’d have to go back to reading newspapers and magazines
A whopping 52 per cent of adults in Australia say that they get their news on social media at least occasionally, according to ACMA data. Why? It’s convenient, first and foremost, but it’s also interesting to see other people weigh in on a story. Still, while it’s nice to not have to hunt around to figure out what’s happening in the world, some of the information on social media may be inaccurate. Plus, when “information finds us,” it can feel impossible to disengage from it.
We’d waste less time
At a time when everyone appears to be busy all the time, we’re all looking for effortless ways to be more productive. And while there are plenty of ways that social media can be productive – including some of those discussed above, like advocacy work and collaborative learning – spending time on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other apps can also be a major time-suck. How much time, exactly? According to data from eMarketer, in 2021 so far, adult social media users have spent an average of 1 hour and 35 minutes on these platforms each day. Though that’s probably not entirely time that’s wasted, think of all the things people could do with that extra hour and a half every day.
We’d have more control over our personal information
When it comes to social media, there’s this idea that you’re at least somewhat in control of your personal information, based on what you decide to post and share with the world. But according to a 2019 study conducted by researchers at the University of Vermont and Australia’s University of Adelaide, that’s not entirely true. In fact, even if a person doesn’t have a Facebook or Twitter account, a surprising amount of their personal information can be gathered through posts that their friends, family members, and others have made. The researchers compare the situation to second hand smoke: even though you may have never touched a cigarette in your life, you may find yourself (or in this example, your personal information) at risk, thanks to other people. Keep this in mind the next time you’re tempted to include a friend in one of your posts.