We live in a world where communication has been changed significantly by emerging technology. Social media sites are now popular at home, at work, and on the go. Millions of people across the globe use social media sites, such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest. While social media offers many personal and business benefits, there are also some problems with social media in the workplace and at home.
Here’s a closer look at 10 problems with social media. Being aware of these problems can help organizations and individuals find better ways to enjoy the benefits of social media without being caught unaware by the potential problems.
Problems with Social Media in the Workplace
Social media marketing is exploding, but while social media offers many benefits when used in a professional manner, it has the potential to cause serious problems at work. Here are a few of the common problems with social media in the workplace.
Problem #1 – Social Media Often Reduces Productivity on the Job
One of the main problems social media can cause in the workplace is a reduction in productivity on the job. According to the National Law Review, 82% of employees say that they use social media for personal use on the job. If all employees in a 50-employee workforce spent 15 minutes using social media for personal use each day, that company would lose 3,250 hours of productivity each year.
Problem #2 – Increased Risk of Viruses and Malware
Another potential problem with social media in the workplace is the increase risk of viruses and malware. Unfortunately, hackers love social media sites because they find it easy to launch spam and malware attacks. While social media sites work hard to prevent problems with malware and viruses, not all third-party applications on social media sites are safe.
Problem #3 – Social Media Can Potentially Hurt Employee Relations
Social media has the potential to hurt employee relations at work as well. It’s not uncommon for employees to use social media to harass other coworkers or to send negative messages that make it difficult for employees to work together. Employee relations are often difficult enough to navigate without the addition of conversations via social media sites.
Problem #4 – Company Image and Confidentiality Issues May Occur
When employees have access to social media sites at work, it opens companies up to problems with company image and/or confidentiality issues. Workers may post business information inadvertently that a company may not want publicly released. Confidential information could be accidentally sent to the wrong person, leaking confidential company information.
Problem #5 – Social Media May Result in Loss of Resources for Companies
Most employees don’t think about the fact that using social media sites can result in a loss of resources for their company. Although regular updates from social media sites don’t take up a lot of bandwidth, many of the video links on these sites eat up a significant amount of bandwidth, and when high levels of bandwidth are used, it can result in significant costs to the company.
Problems with Social Media at Home
Social media not only has the potential to create problems at work, but it can result in problems at home as well. Here’s a look at the rest of the 10 problems with social media that can occur at home.
Problem #6 – Social Media Often Takes Away from Family Time
Since many families already lead such hectic lives, families don’t have enough time to spend together. Unfortunately, many families end up spending time on social media sites instead of spending quality time together as a family.
Problem #7 – Children and Teens are Losing the Ability Interact with Others In Person
Another problem with social media at home is that excessive use of social media by children and teens is resulting in a loss of the ability to interact with other individuals in person. When kids and teens spend all their time interacting with people on the web, they don’t learn about social cues or how to read non-verbal behavior.
Problem #8 – Social Media Takes Away from Relaxation and Leisure Time
Social media also takes away from relaxation and leisure time at home. Most people, including teens, deal with a lot of stress daily. Instead of using free time to relax, many people now spend their time in front of a screen on social media sites. When individuals don’t learn how to relax or use leisure time, it leads to a buildup of stress that can eventually manifest itself in negative physical or mental symptoms.
Problem #9 – Excessive Drama and Bullying Often Come with Social Media
Unfortunately, excessive drama and bullying often come with social media use, particularly when used by kids and teens. Bullying via social media sites has become a huge problem, particularly among teenagers. In fact, according to BullyingStatistics.org, more than 50% of teens and adolescents have been cyberbullied. While cyberbullying exists in other venues, it’s increasingly common on social media sites. In multiple cases, cyberbullying has resulted in a teenager committing suicide, so the risk of cyberbullying cannot be easily dismissed.
Problem #10 – Many People Don’t Know How to Be Present in the Moment
Last, many people don’t know how to be present in the moment anymore due to excessive social media use. Families and friends often spend their times on social media sites when they’re together. Many individuals are no longer interacting mindfully in the moment. Couples spend their dates on social media instead of getting to know each other. Kids hang out with friends and spend the time with their noses buried in their smartphone instead of having fun. Tourists are snapping photos to post on social media sites instead of enjoying their travels.
Yes, social media has many benefits to offer on the job and at home. However, excessive use of social media comes with many potential problems. Understanding those problems can help companies and individuals learn how to enjoy the benefits of social media without falling prey to the potential pitfalls.