Impact of Social Media on Social Values: A Comparative Analysis of the Users and Non-Users
Keywords:Cultivation, Dependency, Knowledge Gap, Non-Users, Users, Values, Social Media
People across the globe currently use smartphones to access various social media applications. This dependency on social media by its users also causes some harm to society and creates a gap between them and the non-users. The study begins with a question: What kind of harm is triggered by the disproportionate usage of the applications being considered part of social media? It also discusses a potential threat by social media to social values. The study analyzes the level of threat to the cultural and social fabric. The study is based on two theories of mass communication; the knowledge gap hypothesis for investigating the gap between two different age groups as well as users of social media and non-users, and the cultivation theory to look into the effects; that social media puts on our social standards and values. The research has been designed under both the qualitative and quantitative methodologies so that the impact of social media on social values can be measured empirically. The data has been collected through questionnaires filled by 50 respondents in Peshawar, including 25 users and non-users each, of social media. The data reveals that the excessive use of the internet has led to significant changes in the social values of society. Results affirm that for those who spend more time on social media, their social values are damaged compared to the non-users.