Posted: February 17th, 2022

Social Media and “Real Life” Interaction


Social Media and “Real Life” Interaction

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Literature Review on Social Media and “Real Life” Interaction


Social media usage in interaction has increased significantly in the recent past, thus raising primary concern in real-life interaction. Owing to this is the fact that there is a vast number of individuals using various social media platforms for exchange. Incredibly this is believed to have substantial impact on the real-life social interaction. Despite that there are yet no clear facts to establish such beliefs. A major reason to this is the difference ideology that supports the belief. There is a wide range of ideas that try to explain the impact of high social media usage and real-life interaction. Studies reveal that major drivers to the impact of social media interaction and real-life social interaction are anxiety and social isolation. Other studies also suggest that the impacts of social media on real-life social interaction is dependent on factor such as personality traits. 


It is evidenced that the emergence of social media has shaped the face of interaction. Incredibly social interaction has increased since the is discovery of the social media. Studies suggest that the use of social media in recent days have increased significantly compared to real-life interaction. According to Gray (2018), age is the major contributing factor to the high rise in the social media interaction. Owing to this is the fact a vast majority of the social media users are the youths. Nonetheless Gray (2018) argues that social network amongst has however caused addiction amongst the youths. A vast majority of the social networking users are subjects of addition, thus interfering with their behaviors in real life. Studies reveal that real-life interaction have positive effects on the behavior of an individual. Most importantly it instills positive behavior amongst the users and it can help to minimize mental concern amongst the social media users. 

            Wegmann, Stodt, and Brand (2015), assert that major causes of depression and anxiety amongst social media users are expectations and self-regulation set by themselves. Nonetheless such individuals prefer using social media for communication instead  of real-life interaction. As stated by Wegmann, Stodt, and Brand (2015), that this group prefer social media to real-life interaction as they perceive it as convenient and easy to access. Besides though social media platforms, users can find many people compared to real-life interaction. As thus this has contributed largely to the increase in the social media usage and a decline in real-life interaction. Wegmann, Stodt, and Brand (2015), also assert that social media has a negative impact on the emotions of the users. In most cases the users of the social media are less likely to handle such emotions easily and this affect largely how they relate with others real-life. Notably, this account for the increase in mental health issues amongst social media users, making it difficult for them to relate to the real world.           

            According to Phua, Jin, and Kim (2017), bonding capital is one effect of the social media networking. Studies have also established that Instagram and Facebook are the major factor influencing bonding social capital. Notably, some of the factors in social media binding moderate usage of in such platforms thus making interaction difficult amongst the users. Moreover, social media interaction creates interaction gap as it is more virtual than physical. In that regard it discourages physical interaction amongst the users compared to the life-life interaction. Essentially communication is in most cases verbal and face-to-face; however, social media does not encourage these aspects of communication Phua, Jin, and Kim (2017). Importantly this has changed real-life interaction significantly as the users of social media do not engage each other physically while interacting. As a result, interaction in real-life has declined substantially.    

            Other studies have found out that social media interaction have affected the outcome of social interaction adversely. The manner of communication  engagement used in social media platform has a major impact on the outcome of the social interaction (Munzel, Meyer-Waarden & Galan, 2018). Owing to that is the fact social media has a wide range of virtual space that comprises of age and gender. As mentioned, the youths are the main users of the social media sites. Most adults do not prefer the use of social media and this has a substantial impact of any communication on various social media platforms. Essentially this implies that there is an informational gap between the youths and adults. Furthermore, in real-life interaction is more engaging than using social media interaction.       

            Kuss and Griffiths (2017), states that social media has social support in real life. In essence social support in the context of social media networking is difficult. Notably this has raised many mental health concerns amongst many social media users. Remarkably due to the rise in such mental concern amongst the social media has reduced real-life engagement. Kuss and Griffiths (2017), also argues that the addiction of social media is often based on   sociodemographic differences amongst the users. The main cause of addiction on social media especially Facebook is fear of missing the trending information. Notably this has limited many social media uses to engage in real-life interaction. Owing to that is the fact the social media users often take most of the time on social media sites due to addition. studies have it that such individuals find it difficult to relate with others in real life, thus reducing the interaction in real life. 


Research Questions

What impacts does social media networking has on ‘real-life’ interaction?   

How does social media usage promote depression amongst its users?       






















Gray, L. (2018). Exploring How And Why Young People Use Social Networking

Sites. Educational Psychology in Practice, 34(2), 175-194.

Kuss, D. J., & Griffiths, M. D. (2017). Social Networking Sites And Addiction: Ten Lessons

Learned. International Journal Of Environmental Research And Public Health, 14(3),


Meshi, D., & Ellithorpe, M. E. (2021). Problematic Social Media Use And Social Support

Received In Real-Life Versus On Social Media: Associations With Depression,

Anxiety And Social Isolation. Addictive Behaviors, 119, 106949.

Munzel, A., Meyer-Waarden, L., & Galan, J. P. (2018). The Social Side Of Sustainability:

Well-Being As A Driver And An Outcome Of Social Relationships And Interactions

On Social Networking Sites. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 130, 14-


Phua, J., Jin, S. V., & Kim, J. J. (2017). Uses And Gratifications Of Social Networking Sites

For Bridging And Bonding Social Capital: A Comparison Of Facebook, Twitter,

Instagram, And Snapchat. Computers In Human Behavior, 72, 115-122.

Wegmann, E., Stodt, B., & Brand, M. (2015). Addictive Use Of Social Networking Sites Can

Be Explained By The Interaction Of Internet Use Expectancies, Internet Literacy,

And Psychopathological Symptoms. Journal Of Behavioral Addictions, 4(3), 155-


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