There have been many downsides lately to the outbreak of the Coronavirus, including barren grocery stores, increased social isolation, declining mental health, and economic downturns. To cope with these negatives, especially the distancing from others, people have turned toward social media and using technology to remain connected. As a frequent user of Instagram and Snapchat, I have noticed many people posting challenges for one another to complete, talking to one another in group chat settings, and coming together to discuss current issues, among other things. In a time of technological advancements and the mass spread of information, negativity can be spread as easily as positivity. People constantly become fearful due to what they read online or what new rumors are shared by the online communities they are a part of. I have been happy lately with the amount of positive information, encouragement, and motivation that has been spreading on social media lately, when everyone has reasons to feel distressed and down. While all social media has been benefiting lately due to the necessity for people to communicate through their phones and computers, WhatsApp has seen possibly the greatest increase in usage, a whopping 40%. Since WhatsApp is free to use and allows people to communicate across national borders, it is a great platform during this national emergency for families and friends to remain connected and in constant communication with one another. I think it is important for all of us to consider how great it is that we have the ability to continue talking to one another, seeing each other’s faces, and keeping motivation through social media and technology during these times when things feel uncertain and may be difficult.
If you would like to read more about the increase in social media usage due to COVID-19, please see the article below: