Hi, need to submit a 750 words essay on the topic Minimum age for social networking sites.
In this case, “inappropriate” means that the dangers outweigh the benefits of having an account on one of these sites.
There are many dangers associated with these SNSs. One of the dangers is that these social networking sites often display sexual content. A content analysis of MySpace in 2006 found that 59% of the profiles on that site had photos that were sexual or risque,
while 56% of the profiles had at least some profanity in them (Nyland, et al., 2007). Moreover, there is a general fear that sexual predators are lurking on-line – a 2008 study revealed that 4% of young people encountered unwanted sexual advances on an SNS (Ybarra & Mitchell, 2008, p. e350) – although at least one commentator believes that this fear is overblown, and that tech-savvy teenagers have found ways to thwart these predators by adjusting their privacy settings and their on-line behavior (Tynes, 2007, p. 582). Cyberbullying, which is defined as repeated harmful contact that is perpetrated by cell phone, e-mail or through an SNS, is another danger that young people may face on these sites (Mesch, 2009, p. 288).
At the same time, there is evidence that young adults – ages 18 through 25 – benefit greatly from these websites. Research indicates that this is the period of life where long-term social skills are developed, skills that are essential to develop relationships and find careers. SNSs are important in this development, as they help the young person find new relationships and strengthen existing ones (Steinfeld, et al., 2008, p. 435). These relationships are integral in attaining “social capital,” which refers to the benefits an individual receives from his or her social connections, and develop psycho-socially (Steinfeld, et al., 2008, p. 435). Part of this development is the fact that shy young people often do not feel the same sense of awkwardness and shyness on-line that he or she feels in the
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