Don’t Become Isolated!
McMillan and Chavis formed a theory called, sense of community, to explain how communities work. The theory is described as, “A sense of community is a feeling that participants have of belonging, a feeling that participants matter to one another and to the group, and a shared faith that participants’ needs will be met through their commitment to be together” (Sparks, 2013). This sense of community can contribute to why people want to feel connected in their social media platforms. Theses communities can be formed through homophily. To learn more about homophily https://medium.com/@tt2017/how-connected-are-you-3a51adf768ec . Homophily puts those with similar likes, beliefs, cultures, etc. together in a group.
Algorithms and Cognitive Biases
Social media algorithms are in place to sort users’ feeds based on relevancy rather than the time of publish (Jackson, 2017). These algorithms force “like” pages or people together. This could cause isolation to someone who may share the same friend group, but perhaps not all the same interests. This could be potential for bullying to occur. If someone isn’t sharing the same “group” they may be judged and ridiculed for it.
Cherry (2016) defines cognitive bias as a “systematic mistake in thinking that affects the decisions and judgments that people create. People tend to be selective about what they pay attention to, which can then cause a bias. This bias could also lead to bullying because of the lack of similarities.
One easy way to prevent risks of isolation in social media is to be curious. The more you like the more variety that will show up in your feed. Seiter (2016) says that, “we “like” others posts to maintain a relationship, we add value to it”. Liking others posts, following or friending new pages allows for a larger social network. So get out there and enjoy the things you love and spread the enjoyment to others as well.
Cherry, Kendra. “How Cognitive Biases Influence How We Think And Act”. Verywell. N.p., 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2017.
Jackson, Dominique. “How To Rise Above Social Media Algorithms”. Sprout Social. N.p., 2017. Web. 30 Apr. 2017.
Seiter, Courtney. “The Psychology Of Social Media”. Social. N.p., 2016. Web. 30 Apr. 2017.
Spinks, David. “The Psychology Of Communities — 4 Factors That Create A “Sense Of Community” « The Community Manager”. Thecommunitymanager.com. N.p., 2013. Web. 30 Apr. 2017.