A study by Status of Mind and reported in the Daily Telegraph UK surveyed 1,500 british youths aged between 14-24 and asked them to rank five social media sites on the impact that these sites have on issues of health and well-being. The sites of focus were: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and Youtube.
Youtube was ranked as the most positive for health and well-being, while Snapchat and Instagram were seen as the worst rated. Unfortunately it seems that the researchers did not follow-up the ranking with questions to obtain the reason why youths’ felt they were better or worse. The researchers did surmise, however, that Instagram and Snapchat were more focused on image rather than content and this could explain their negative effects due to chronic teenage issues such as body-image.
While the study is relatively small and seems to be rather basic it does provide an interesting avenue for further investigation as I do not think there is anyone who could deny that social media currently plays a large role in the lives of the younger generation, and their influence could only become stronger in years to come.