According to surveys, many young people reject apps like Instagram and TikTok, calling them “toxic” and “obsessive.”
As reported by the New York Post, new research reveals a growing anti-app trend among 20-somethings, who say they prefer to take control of their lives.
Gabriella Steinerman is a 20-year-old student who evidenced a radical change in her life after quitting social media in 2019.
“When you delete it, you realize you don’t need it,” said the young woman and said she felt immediate relief.
“When I was posting, I wanted the best photo that I took and the best angle, and I had 20 different photos of the same thing.” So “I was comparing myself to myself. It’s not a fun game,” Steinerman added while acknowledging “obsessive and toxic” behavior, which she had normalized.
But the networks seem to be losing their grip on young people. An example of this is shown by a survey commissioned by investment bank Piper Sandler, which consulted users of social networking platforms aged between 7 and 22.
The results showed that in 2 years, Instagram lost ground among the younger generation. For example, in 2020, 31% said it was their favorite platform. However, in the latest survey, it got only 22%.
Some owners of social networks would be aware of the damage that these platforms produce in the youngest.
According to the Wall Street Journal, research commissioned by Facebook showed a major mental and emotional health problem among young Instagram users but kept this data under the rug.
The study found that 32% of female subscribers to the platform were harmed in their self-esteem.
The platform exacerbates body image issues, anxiety, and depression by setting canons of beauties that users strive to achieve from younger and younger ages.
Pat Hamrick, another student who quit Instagram and Facebook two years ago, told of the low self-esteem issues these social networks created for her.
They “had me subconsciously comparing myself to others and it really ate at me. I was asking myself, ‘Am I doing the right things, am I having the right kind of fun?” she told the Post.
According to another survey, this time from Tallo, most Gen Zers polled prefer TikTok to Instagram.
It also found that 75% of young women responded that social media had led them to “compare themselves to their peers.” While only 56% of men said the same.
More than half of all respondents indicated that social media had led them to feel excluded by their peers.
However, there are young people among Generation Z, also known as zoomers, who do not see the need to interact with people through social networks.
“If you have close friends and you’re willing to make a little bit more effort,” said Tzali Evans, a 22-year-old student, “There’s no reason you can’t have the same real-life experiences as someone who is on social media,” she added.