The Social Dilemma: A hidden truth

NOTE: Not a review of the show “The Social Dilemma.”

Technology affect on children

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The Social Dilemma:

A recent show on Netflix, The Social Dilemma, explains the impact of social media and misuse of technology in an extremely detailed way. It makes you rethink your choices and actions. This show reveals how the big brains behind these platforms are manipulating and controlling the thought process of the masses for their personal benefit. And how, without realizing, we are raising our next generation as slaves to technology.

Social media virtual communication.

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However, knowing is not enough. Proactively understanding the graveness of the situation and planning and implementing strategies to mend the situation should be our current concern.

The human brain, since our birth, is programmed to adapt. It is initially like a blank hard drive, and as we grow up and experience the world, more information gets stored in the form of data in our subconscious brain. So it is crucial to pay attention to the surroundings and environment. This information shapes our personality.

As human beings, we are susceptible to get drawn more towards negativity, and maybe that’s the reason more help books exist in the market to showcase the positive way of living and accepting the changes or transitions. It is easier to read or hear about optimism than implement them. I believe our upbringing partially depends on our mental ability to block the negativity.

As parents of Gen Z kids, we have a more significant challenge because technology advancement is at its peak, and so is its availability. Having access to the internet is no longer a luxury.

Children are exposed to devices like mobile phones, tablets, or computers from a very early age, as early as two years old or less. Unknowingly, we are pushing our kids into this rabbit hole.

The scary part is not them asking for watching their favorite cartoon or TV shows. It’s their subsequent involvement in social media where they have no control over their emotions, and they exhibit behavior that lacks compassion. The inability to differentiate between fabricated information and reality makes this whole situation dangerous.

Social dilemma caused by social media

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So what should we do?
The question for which there is a wide range of solutions, however, we hardly try to administer them.
  1. Personally, struggling with keeping our little one away from technology or the internet made us realize that in this current world, depriving him of access to it is not a solution. Instead, we have to teach him to understand the pros and cons before giving him complete access to it. Hence, close monitoring is mandatory. 
  2. When we are denying him access to a specific application or device, or restricting him from watching any show, it is of utmost importance to be as transparent as possible and explain the reason for taking such decisions as parents. Transparency is the key to trust and peacefully making this work.
  3. For younger kids, parents have to be extra vigilant and manage the technology exposure time.  There is a lot of material available explaining the appropriate screen-time for different age group, for example, Screen Time Guidelines for Preschoolers
  4. We should be available for our kids when they want to interact to make them realize that human interaction is more important than virtual communication over social media platforms.
  5.  Last, we should make them understand their worth in this world. We should consciously attempt to instill proper moral values in them, so they are brave and smart enough to make the right decisions and show compassion when required.

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