Is social media helping or hurting?

Read my full presentation here.

There are many examples of social media and the internet being hurtful. Young teens are very easily able to find images and ‘motivational’ poems and phrases online. These are found by simply searching for phrases or hashtags such as #ana, #thinspo and #mia. They can find phrases such as ‘My best friend Ana’ which personifies anorexia and gives the impression that it is someone they can rely on.

On the other hand, there are many examples of social media helping to fight against eating disorders and Photoshop. Two social media sites which are visibly helping are Tumblr and Instagram. Both of these photo-sharing sites now give a content advisory statement before showing you images if you search for terms in relation to eating disorders. Both sites also give a link to support sites and counselling pages.

There are also many celebrities setting very good examples of being against Photoshop and photo editing. Jessica Simpson refused make up and retouching in a photo shoot she did for Marie Claire magazine. Beyonce was also outraged when she found out her photos for her H&M campaign had been edited to make her curves smaller. More good examples like these have to be set in order for people to realise the differences the Photoshop makes in the advertisements we see every day.

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