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Social Media Arguments – The Science Behind It All

Social media platforms are a common place to argue with people over things that don’t even matter much. Research shows why we often do this.


As human beings we are all different in some ways. That’s just how we were made. Generally no two people are the same a 100%. Even if you are twins, you will still likely to have differences in one way or another. These differences are the reasons why there exists a disagreement on things among people. And disagreement is what lets us to argument with other people.


While arguments may give you a very negative perspective on things, but it may also have several benefits, although you need to be careful with your arguments for a positive impact.


In most cases, we make the mistake of not being careful enough in an argument and let it destroy relations. Social media arguments are no exception. Social media arguments can also make or break relations with other people. It may as well have negative effects in your real life.

As social beings we live in social groups of other people. We live with our friends and family and we tend to keep a good relation with our family members, neighbours and friends. But how many people do we actually keep in touch socially? Dunbar’s Number is estimation, proposed by British anthropologist Robin Dunbar, of how many people can a person maintain a good social relation with, which is 150.


So among this social group of 150 people, we still manage to develop some kind of disagreement with some of them at some point once or quite a few times.


However, a person in social media is connected to a lot more people than just 150. It is almost impossible to maintain a good social relationship with all of those connections, even on social media. So just imagine, how likely it is to come to a disagreement with someone on social media! It is almost inevitable that you will face quite a few disagreements while being active on social media.

Reasons Why We Engage in Arguments


People come across disagreements or social conflicts many times in their time on social media, especially nowadays with everything that’s been going on around the world. Chances are, you may end up engaging in one of them if not more at some point.

There are quite a few reasons as to why we disagree with things on social media and engage in arguments.


The medium of our communication can influence the perception of our understanding of a situation. We may end up taking a very different idea of an argument while reading than that of while watching or listening to that exact same thing.

Watching someone speak or just hearing someone speak gives you a much more original context to a matter than just reading about it. But most of our interactions on social media these days happen in the form of reading. So, it is very easy to form disagreements because of misinterpreting conversations on a comment thread or on a chat box due to the lack of original context.


Another reason for arguing online might be the content that you encounter online. Social media users have faced content that made them angry. And with anger we may end up engaging in online battles once in a while.


There are other reasons why we argue online which can have serious repercussions on people. People have experienced some kind of online harassment. While we may sometimes take part in arguments just for the fun, it may also result in hurting someone badly.


An interesting point to explain why we take part in virtual fights online. We have a genetic tendency to engage in fights, but acting out in violation is not a social norm in our society anymore. So people find out other places to settle their urge to fight, some find it in watching sport that has physical engagement like mixed martial arts and so many of us find it in fighting strangers online.


Should We Stop Arguing on Social Media?


Arguments that happen over social media could have effects on your real life as well. A fight you had on social media can go on in your real life too if you haven’t been careful enough.


So the one word answer would be “Yes”, you probably should stop arguing online unless you don’t want to stop wasting your valuable time and energy. But that’s totally different from engaging with people on social media. We can and probably should engage with people and in different social media cause, that’s absolutely fine as long as it’s productive and doesn’t hurt your mental peace. But don’t go waste your time throwing random comments at each other just to win an argument that has no moral victory. By doing it, you may end up hurting the other person which probably wasn’t even your intention to start with.


If the argument is really important and you can’t seem to come to a conclusion after a few comments, then you probably should leave it there.


Be humble towards people and their feelings in general whether it’s in real life or in social media. Having a thought of scepticism is okay, but criticizing someone for it every time may not. Before you make a critical assumption of someone’s online activity, please be sure you know the backstory leading up to it. Even then, try to provide help or make suggestions if possible instead of just attacking someone online just because it’s easy doing it online.


Remember if you are good to people, chances are others will be good to you and even if they are not, trust me, you will still be feeling great about yourself.


Hope you find this article useful. Thanks for reading.


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