“You could drive past a beautiful home, but you don’t know what goes on behind its closed doors.”
Maria McConnell, professor of Business, made this comparison with social media posts and the true emotions that are not revealed social media postings as seen with the Gabby Petito case.
Petito, a Long Island resident, had been posting cheerful photos of her cross-country trip with her boyfriend Brian Laundrie. The couple had argued and she was reported missing after Laundrie returned home without her. Petito’s body was found on Sep. 19.
Laundrie and Petito were believed to be a perfect match for each other on their social media posts, but recent police video cams show a completely different story.
What seemed to be a happy couple online, turned into a homicide case, has led many across the internet to see that social media does not always bring out the real side of life.
“Nobody wants anything bad to show up on social media,” said McConnell. “Everyone has their fantasy. We all have an ideal goal of life, and that we must live up to that idea even if it is not there.”
Mary Murphy, manager of Accessibility Services, said, “It is so easy for people to be courageous or negative as they are not face to face.”
With social media, people can send an instant message to a loved one in a minute to express an emotion that could not be seen. Murphy said that social media can let people be courageous or negative on any platform to get their point across, but deep down that person would not say anything in the real world.
Kelly McLaughlin, a Learning Specialist at LCCC, said, “It’s so easy to compare yourself to other people, even if the comparisons aren’t real.”
Many social media posts often focus on a beautiful or elegant way of life. McLaughlin said much of social posts leave out the “day-in and day-out” part of people’s lives, and that much of what is posted are just highlights. The highlights show a life that the person may not actually live, or emotions they may not feel. Highlights can also be edited digitally.
With relationships, McLaughlin said that “good” relationships posted online could receive attention from peers, even if it is a toxic one.
Michael Reiss II, an LCCC student, said a lot of students’ anxiety result from social media. Reiss said that anxiety comes from certain people that someone may follow, showing a life that the viewer wishes for but cannot achieve. |