Someone once said, “Too much of anything is not good.” Thus, everything should be done in moderation. With the advances in technology, however, particularly social networking, teens seem to have dived into deep waters and forgotten to come up for fresh air. This article takes a close look at the link between technology and social skills in teens focusing on both the advantages and disadvantages.
- Technology helps teens connect.
Youth struggle to discover who they are. An identity crisis causes teens to feel awkward and out of place; communicating with others becomes a real challenge for those who are shy or introverted. Nonetheless, technology creates an environment to help youth be themselves. In fact, teens connect faster and with more people online without worrying about how they look or come across.
- Technology gets teens talking about current issues.
Twitter and Face Book, for example, have unique formats for social networking. They allow teens to voice their opinions about various topics. Youth can jump right into conversations, and their voices are heard by people around the world. It’s like being a part of history instead of reading about it.
- Technology increases written communication.
Technology has taken written communication to another level. Youth use their cell phones to text nonstop. They probably send more texts and emails than they write in an entire school year. Teens also camp out on Face Book.
- Technology encourages misuse of the English language.
As a result of technology, another language appears to have been created. Words are shortened, misspelled, and letters are no longer capitalized, especially when writing emails or sending text messages. At the same time, technology increases the use of slang. Some teens believe that improper use of the English language is acceptable at all times. Because they misuse the language so often, they don’t know how to adapt to different social situations.
- Technology takes away from recreation.
In short, people in the United States are overweight. Instead of getting some form of recreation, teens remain parked in front of a computer. Technology is no substitute for taking a walk, riding a bike, or sitting in the park.
- Technology reduces quality face to face time.
Why go visit a family member when you can send an email or a text? What happened to reaching out and touching the other person? Being in the presence of another strengthens social skills. Teens learn non verbal cues, teens learn active listening, and teens practice making eye contact.
- Technology opens the door to shady characters.
As you know, technology brings out the good and the bad. Youth can be reaching out to questionable people without knowing it. Shady characters use the Internet to prey on teens.