What Is Social Media Really Doing to Society? (14:51)

Posted on by Abby Johnson |

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In a day and age obsessed with social media and technology, it’s hard to picture life without them. But, is that good or bad? Or neither? According to Andrew Keen, author of new book Digital Vertigo: How Today’s Online Social Revolution Is Dividing, Diminishing, and Disorienting Us, the Internet, and particularly social media, is changing society in a way that worries him.

Keen has long been known for the strong position he has taken on the Internet, claiming that it is having an adverse effect on society. After voicing this stance in his book The Cult of the Amateur in 2007, he has been labeled with nicknames such as the “Net’s supreme cyber-grump” and the “Antichrist of the Silicon Valley.”

He spoke to WebProNews and explained that, while he does support the Internet and social media, he is concerned that the publicness of the social age is resulting in “losing something essential about what it means to be human.” As he explained, many of our actions on social networks aren’t really very social. He thinks that most social networks, instead, represent “just an aggregation of individuals.”

To avoid a potential harmful impact, Keen believes that the Internet needs to become more civilized and habitable. He also suggests that government regulation regarding privacy protections could help prevent the concerns from getting worse.

Do you agree with Keen’s views on both the Internet and social media? We’d love to know.

Posted in: Books, Social Media
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