How many of you use Instagram?
Those of you who answered “I do” probably already know that they’re getting rid of the Likes function. It’s for a good reason, however. In the article “An Instagram Without ‘Likes’? by Lucia De Stefani, she quotes from Jim Steyer, chief executive of Common Sense Media, a media watchdog group, “‘We know that kids seek validation via the Like button. We know that it can negatively affect kids’ and teenagers’ self-esteem.'”
This is true.
Having an outside perspective because I don’t use any social media apps, I’ve noticed my peers complaining about how few likes a recent post of theirs got, or bragging about how many likes a photo they posted got. My mother is a high school teacher, and she has told me that some of her students have low self-esteem and they lack self-confidence partly because of “likes.”
Here’s a question of mine: Do we really need likes? They have positive effects, yeah, but they also have many negative effects, like the self-esteem and self-worth problem. Teens have gotten depression partly from low likes. It’s a simple truth: Likes are good and mostly bad. Sure, Influencers use likes to get grips on important events, but do people our age really need them? You might be “TikTok famous.” My prediction is that TikTok is going to crash into the ground like Music.ly did. It might, it might not. But what’s the point of being famous on a platform that might not last?
These platforms are supposed to be used for personal pleasure. Not just for likes! Every human wants approval. That’s a fact. But we should seek approval from ourselves first, then look for approval from our friends (and that doesn’t mean doing drugs or smoking; please don’t do that). Once we have both of those and can fall back on them, that is when you look for approval on social media.
But don’t forget this: The most important approval to have is approval from yourself.
photo credit: Tubefilter.com