Lively and in-depth discussions of city news, politics, science, entertainment, the arts, and more.
Hosted by Larry Mantle
Airs Weekdays 10 am - 12 pm

After An Exhausting Pandemic Year On Social Media, Some People Are Done For Good




In this photo illustration, a smart phone screen displays a manifestation from the TikTok page of @bailasbohemian222, on May 28, 2021, in Arlington, Virginia.
In this photo illustration, a smart phone screen displays a manifestation from the TikTok page of @bailasbohemian222, on May 28, 2021, in Arlington, Virginia.
ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images

Listen to story

20:49
Download this story 20MB

In the early days of the pandemic, when lockdowns shut down workplaces and travel, many people turned to their screens for news, reassurance, humor and connection.

Social media—whether it be Facebook, Whats App, TikTok, Twitter, Instagram— offered an outlet when so few existed. Neighbors made Facebook pages to bring groceries to their elderly neighbors while families choreographed TikTok dances to distract themselves and Instagram users showed off home-baked loaves of sourdough. But as the pandemic wore on, social media’s toxic underbelly began to show. Some users clocked record amounts of time on the platforms, which have been linked to depression and loneliness. The daily onslaught of news on COVID-19 and political violence could feel oppressive, especially when it hit close to home. Conspiracy theories like QAnon flourished amidst the isolation, and debates about the November election forced some families to stop speaking for good. For some social media users, it was enough to quit the platforms altogether. 

Today on AirTalk, we’re learning more about why some social media users are quitting social media. Are you considering deleting your accounts, or have you already done so? We want to hear from you! Give us a call at 866-893-5722.

Guest:

Karen North, clinical professor of communication at the University of Southern California and an expert in social media and psychology; she tweets @KarenNorthUSC