Social Networks?

In a post by some time ago that you can see here I launched my complaint to Instagram and Facebook, plus the first to be honest, a complaint in which I noted how, according to my personal experience, Social Networks are harmful to health.

Then I happen to read this article in the Corriere della Sera web by chance, and I discover that that was not only my consideration but also an awareness well within not an association of bigoted parents who hates social media but to the same management of Facebook and Instagram (and Whatsapp).

It all starts with a sensational investigation by the Wall Street Journal that has put pen to paper how the management of Facebook and Instagram has long been aware of the psychological damage that social networks are creating, especially in the developing minds of the youngest.

News that, in a normal world and country, should make everyone jump out of their seats, but that’s not the case. Today’s parents are in fact unable to exercise any kind of control over their children’s use of social media because they are the first to be unable to do without it.


But what are the psychological damages reported by the Wall Street Journal. We talk about how, precisely because of the continuous comparison with models of aesthetic perfection, 33% of girls struggle to feel at ease with their body, 40% of them do not feel attractive or worse still feel social media as a tool. pressure and not entertainment as it should be.

Do you know what this means? It means having more boys and girls in anxiety crises or worse still gripped by the grip of depression; and so, in addition to likes, in our days, the consumption of psychotropic drugs by the under 18s also increases dramatically.

In the worst case, the non-acceptance first of one’s own body and then of one’s person tout court leads to suicide (the leading cause of death among American teenagers in recent years).

The Wall Street Journal investigation also revealed how the management of Facebook and Instagram are well aware of these social distortions induced by their services, but do not want to act for economic reasons; as long as people post on Facebook and take selfies on Instagram they make a profit… And let’s talk about astronomical figures.


How does it come out? As a man and as a father, I honestly don’t have an immediate recipe to suggest. I believe that study (to know these dangers) and family dialogue (to learn how to manage them) are certainly the first first aid kit to refer to. In fact, there are no magic wands capable of making social media disappear from people’s lives; but, with dialogue and training, we can teach the youngest to manage it. A little like how they are taught the value of contraception. Even priests no longer dream of telling a teenager not to have sex; what you do and should do and explain to them how to do it safely.

Here, and sorry for the excess of metaphor, today we need a “condom against social networks” whose use must absolutely be taught to young people. A tool that allows them to derive all the fun and usefulness from these services, without becoming slaves to them, without social media and their popularity they become the only meters with which to evaluate the value of their lives.

I call it provocatively “condom against social networks” but in reality there would be other words to use. We should talk about dialogue in the family and training at school.

The world of tomorrow does not need followers (from the English “person who follows”) but leaders (always from the English “person who leads”); otherwise in 20 years we will end up being a zombie people ready to replicate never authentic thoughts in our heads but only children of what we have read somewhere. We will know a lot, but we will not have understood anything.

We will stop looking in the mirror to understand who we are and what we are becoming every morning by entrusting Instagram and its influencers with the task of telling us who we are and writing our destiny.