Social Media on Mobile – Convenience or Addiction?

 By Somali K Chakrabarti

You are what you share.  – C.W. Leadbeater

 

The above saying has gained relevance, more than ever before, in this age of social media. Breaking the barriers of age, hierarchy, gender, status and geography, social media allows us to express our views, share ideas, bridge distances and connect with like minded people.

I have to admit that I have taken to social media like a fish takes to water.

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Social media has become an integral part of my life, to the extent, that a day without social media now appears to me almost like a day without electricity

Social Media on Mobile Vs Web

This was not always the case though.

Earlier my social media usage was limited to some web activity on Facebook, Blog, and LinkedIn and occasional tweets. Additionally, owing to my penchant for collecting beautiful images, sometimes I indulged in pinning pictures on Pinterest.

The scene changed drastically after I started using mobile apps on my smartphone.

Within no time, the smartphone took my social media experience to a new high!

My morning, now began with a pleasant note (err notification) on my cell, with gorgeous Good Morning pictures, beaming smileys, emojis and motivational quotes shared by friends on WhatsApp. I found myself forwarding the messages to other friends to spread a dash of cheer, right at the onset of the day. My creativity found expression with the use of emoticons and I didn’t even have to bother about call rates on social media.

During the day, I scrolled through the status updates of my friends on Facebook and contacts on LinkedIn. There was no need to remember birthdays, any more as Facebook religiously send out the birthday reminders on my cell each morning.

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Social Media on Mobile Has Made Me More Agile

My travel time, now, is well spent in reading articles gleaned from different sources on reddit, scheduling tweets and updates on buffer app for sharing throughout the day, when I am offline. Content sourcing and sharing has never been easier. The moment my eyes spot anything interesting, I click pictures on my cell and quickly upload the images to Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

My Twitter activity has rocketed with the use of smartphone as it allows me to set on mobile notification for tweets from specific people and I receive notifications when people quote, fav or retweet me, allowing me to respond immediately, if I wish to.

The WordPress app on my smartphone dutifully sends out notifications every time someone Likes or comments on any of my posts. It also allows me to read the new blog posts from my favorite bloggers who I follow and track the stats for my blog.

Emails, for me, are now mostly limited to formal conversations. When I want to catch up with a friend for a quick chat, WhatsApp, Hike or SnapChat are there for me.

Yet, all these options of social media on mobile have not completely lessened my love for web access on laptop. I still feel that the laptop is better for writing a blog post as this one, or for composing formal emails.

 

..The Drawbacks

As easy as it is to be connected on social media through mobile devices, constant use of social media is also quite draining. At times, I put the cell on silent and keep it out of my reach as it becomes too intrusive when I am trying hard to focus on something and I find some hundred odd notifications lined up on my cell.

Sometimes, on receiving simultaneous notifications from different sources my cell buckles under the load of excess social media activity and hangs. To get trolled on social media can be quite taxing too. Thankfully WhatsApp and Twitter now give the provision to Mute specific contacts.

Yet, with social media on mobile it is hard to resist the temptation of checking updates on the smartphone, every now and then.

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So, till now, I continue to strive to strike the balance between building my network (hopefully net worth too) on social media and reducing distraction due to my fixation with social media.

 

I am participating in the #SMWBangalore activity at BlogAdda in association with Social Media Week Bangalore

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Readers Comments (19)

  1. Easier to get in touch with global friends, distant relatives and FB ‘members’
    Difficult to get in touch with your family as family is busy with their ‘members’ !!

    Reply
  2. Excellent post.i still prefer social media on web as its a big addiction of checking updates on mobile every now and then. Sometimes it eats away ur productive time if people get too much addicted.

    Reply
  3. Tough question 😛 But I think that’s the way in the coming days.

    Reply
  4. Can’t agree more with what you’ve said. It’s now a part and parcel of our life but, sometimes it’s really annoying when the person in front of me takes out her/his smartphone while talking. Only then, I can understand the degree of annoyance of my parents. 😛

    Reply
  5. Excellent blog. The convenience is indispensable yet we all agree that we have actually become unsocial.

    Reply
  6. Yes Somali ,it is an addiction for homemaker s like me. From early morning to late night we exchange everything from jokes ,quotes,cooking tips, latest photo graphs and the list is endless. If somehow my phone is low on battery or network is not working ,I myself become restless and not only me, my whole group is like that. 90% of the posts or msgs we share are only for timepass. Nothing useful. If this is not addiction ,then what? And the most irritating part is that ,when people check updates on their smartphones , when they are in the middle of some social gatherings.

    Reply
    • True but at the same time you would agree that we can connect and collaborate and share ideas so easily courtesy social media on mobile. All we need is to figure out a balance and the discipline to minimize distraction and to resist the temptation of overdoing it.

      Reply
  7. I think it’s the most covenient way to be connected with friends and family esp those outside India. But the same time it’s too addictive.

    Reply
  8. bhudeb chakrabarti March 22, 2015 @ 12:25 pm

    In your blog “Social Media on Mobile -Convenience or Distraction ” you have mentioned the pros and cons in an excellent manner .There is no denying the fact that the convenience has become indispensable in our present day life .At the same time we should remember the human and emotional element and endeavour to maintain social relations on a personal plane as far as possible.

    Reply

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