TOPIC: SOCIAL MEDIA DURING COVID – 19
PRIYA THAKRE MBA (Finance)
INTRODUCTION:
Social media is fundamentally changing the way people communicate, consume and collaborate. It provides companies a new platform to interact with their customers. In academia, there is a surge in research efforts on understanding its effects. This paper aims to provide a review of current status of social media research. We discuss the specific domains in which the impacts of social media have been examined. A brief review of applicable research methodologies and approaches is also provided.

OBJECTIVES:

A social media is an online platform which people use to build social networks or social relations with other people who share similar personal or career interests, activities, backgrounds or real-life connections.
1. ROLL OF SOCIAL MEDIA:
Corinti, F.,e t a l Social media are different from industrial media such as newspapers, television, and cinema. While social media are relatively low-cost tools that allow to publish and access information, traditional media require substantial financial investments to publish information. Industrial media are commonly referred to as traditional, broadcasting, or mass media. A common feature of both social media and industrial media is the ability to obtain a large audience. Both a blog post and a television broadcast can reach millions of individuals. There are different parameters that are useful for both describing the difference between the two media and what comprises their different roles in spreading the information.

2. SOCIAL MEDIA IN HEALTH CARE INDUSTRY
Farsi, D. e t a l Specifically, social media is increasingly becoming an important tool in health care by enabling its users to acquire and share information; connect with others in the field and communicate with colleagues, patients, or the public regarding health topics. Social media supports patient empowerment by expanding the knowledge of the patients and placing them in a position where they can take control of their own health care needs. The topic is relevant in today’s scenario because the use of SM and social networking sites (SNSs) is increasing worldwide, especially in the health care industry. The findings presented in this review have strong implications for health care professionals, educators, and researchers.

3. MAKE HEALTH AND RISK COMMUNICATION ON SOCIAL MEDIA:
Gesser-Edelsburg, A.e t a l We explored different organizational strategies for communicating public health information and identified common misconceptions while analysing different studies. Yet an examination of the conduct of some of the health organizations in several countries during the COVID-19 crisis indicates that a significant portion of the approaches based on risk communications in general and on EID communication in particular regrettably were not implemented. This perspective paper propose three complementary paths to help international and local health organizations use social media effectively. Closer examination shows that the way an organization manages its internal discourse affects the way it communicates on the various social media platforms. Effective dialogue with the public is based on transparent, open and diverse health and risk communication in the social media realm.

4. SOCIAL MEDIA IN HEALTH CARE RESEARCH:
Girardi, e t a l Lack of transportation is often a barrier to health care access, and although not every medical condition can be addressed online, access to social media may assist in health education. In addition to facilitating health surveillance and disseminating public health information, social media has been helpful in providing health care problems. A recent study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology demonstrated that false claims are 70% more likely to be retweeted on Twitter than the truth. This represents a serious threat to public health, as misinformation can be readily spread. Health care professionals worry about breaching patient confidentiality and facing consequences under the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and state privacy law.

5. PROMOTE HEALTHY EATING DURING COVID – 19:
Grantham, e t a l Food access and disruptions to food environments were a major concern at the beginning of the pandemic. Food hoarding and panic buying behaviours that took place early in the pandemic reflected consumers’ concerns regarding decreased food availability and uncertainty in the stability of the supply chain. In addition, restaurants and smaller food retailers were suddenly closed or had to take time to shift service styles, disrupting the food environment further. Vulnerable populations, those already food insecure, and those experiencing employment instability were most affected by the abrupt disruptions to food environments and food access issues and were more likely to experience food insecurity as a result, but these food access issues impacted people across socioeconomic levels.

6. USAGE IN BODY JUSTICE COMMUNITIES DURING COVID – 19:
Greene, e t a l Some participants described social media as an increasingly harmful influence in their lives during the pandemic due to compulsive usage and exposure to “toxic content” like misinformation, weight stigma, and homophobia. At the same time, participants noted how social media positively enabled social connection, education, and activation around social justice. Across both of these extremes, many elaborated on the intensive, self-reflective labour of cultivating their accounts so that they mirrored their identities and the kinds of experiences they wanted to have online while preventing the infiltration of unwanted content. In addition to offering new insights into social media usage in body justice communities during COVID-19, our data suggest alternative ways of understanding how individuals manage their experience of social media, curate their social media feeds through additive and subtractive actions, and frequently reflect on how their choices interact with platform algorithms. Their social media feeds through additive and subtractive actions, and frequently reflect on how their choices interact with platform algorithms.

7. Negative impact of social media on mental health:
Guelmami, e t a l Sharing false news that contains biased, emotionally charged information tends to capture more attention and interest than detached, positive, or neutral information. Information and communications technologies, psychosocial factors seem to play a key role. Personal negative feelings, such as loneliness, experienced during the COVID-19–induced lockdown have been shown to promote internet addiction behaviours, resulting in a significantly increased number of hours spent online. If false news is accepted as true, dissemination of scientifically proven and evidence-based narratives to amend such fake news would not have a significant impact on belief in disinformation. Social media can be utilized as platforms and venues for disseminating false information in times of crisis.

8. IMPROVE STUDENT’S PERFORMANCE:
Muhammad, e t a l In today’s digital age, social media platforms are most popular among the student community, and they provide opportunities for open learning where they can easily communicate, interact, and collaborate with each other. The use of social media platforms in educational activities is increasing day by day. Because of the engagement of social media users with such services, they usually develop highly interactive platforms wherein students may create or exchange ideas and discuss information or previously published online content in user-created groups. SM promotes interactions between teachers, subject specialists, students, communities, and major companies. This revolution is the focus of new and creative information technology. Social media platforms have enabled students to work together, interact with colleagues and classmates, and acquire the latest knowledge, which has positive impacts on their performance.

9. GROWTH DURING COVID – 19
Rosen, A. O., e t a l Research has found that since the start of the pandemic, social distancing regulations contributed to increases in social media consumption, and that many engaged in intensive social media. In addition to increased social media use in Spain, the digital communication platform WhatsApp has seen an 83% growth rate during the pandemic, making Spain the country with the highest growth in the world. Another study that examined the relationship between media consumption and psychological well-being among Spanish adults found that there was a significant increase in mean minutes spent per day on social media during lockdown compared to before. As of October 2021, WhatsApp was announced the third top used social media platform in the world, behind YouTube and Facebook, and was rated the ‘favourite’ social media platform among internet users aged 16–64.

10. SOCIAL SUPPORT VIA SOCIAL MEDIA HELPS MAINTAIN EMPATHY DURING COVID – 19:
Xuebing, e t a l The Covid pandemic had turned the world upside down, but not much is known about how people’s empathy toward others in difficult situations might be affected by the pandemic. Based on a nationally representative sample (N = 943) from China, this study first let participants read three real scenarios and then measured: (1) how empathy toward others might be influenced by the perceived social support people obtained by using social media and (2) how different demographics such as age and gender as well as lockdown situations may affect preserving empathetic during the Covid outbreak. Results show that perceived social support via We Chat not only positively impacted empathy but also interacted with anxiety in influencing the degree to which participants could maintain empathy toward others. Those living in cities or towns with higher incomes were more empathetic to others. While anxiety does not necessarily decrease empathy, those who reported gaining more social support on social media showed more empathy toward others despite their elevated levels of anxiety. Age negatively predicted empathy, but gender and lockdown conditions did not impact empathy. This study contributes to the literature by identifying the critical role empathy plays in people’s affective response to others during a public health crisis.

CONCLUSION:
The effects from social media are very complex and vary from person to person. Based on our data we found that many people either experience negative effects or notice them in other people. However, in the time we’ve had to conduct research we were not able to find direct and clear causation, but we are hoping with more time and further research so we can get clearer conclusions. Please feel free to go to our survey about social media so we can gather more data and help further our research! With the knowledge of both positive and negative affects it would be interesting to see if they would and would give good insight into how addicted our generation is. To continue on with the idea of phone addiction we could look more into why people use certain apps and how specific apps make them feel.

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Rosen, A. O., Holmes, A. L., Balluerka, N., Hidalgo, M. D., Gorostiaga, A., Gómez-Benito, J., & Huedo-Medina, T. (2022). Is social media a new type of social support? social media use in spain during the COVID-19 pandemic: A mixed methods study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(7), 3952. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph19073952

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