Media, my dearest frenemy

Media can be my best ally, as well as my worst enemy. In other words, our relationship is complicated to say the least.

Taking for example an event that occurred a few days ago; one of my favourite bands came to Amsterdam and thanks to my stalking skills I found out at what hotel they were staying. I went there and got to meet them. If it wasn’t for social medias, I wouldn’t have gotten to see my idols, but nothing is black or white. While standing in front of the hotel in a small crowd of strangers at night, something did not feel quite right. Imagine being exhausted after a day of traveling, performing and giving interviews, coming back to your hotel past midnight, when the only thing you want to do is drop dead on your bed but to do so, you must get past a crowd of fifty people basically throwing their phones at you. That night I felt guilt. I realised how the media can be an invasion of privacy. While they were helping me make one of my dreams come true, they were transforming someone else’s reality into a nightmare.

Many of my childhood memories are connected to the movies and shows I used to watch on television. They impacted my growth; as I would see my role models on TV and try to imitate their behaviour, they would influence my music taste and even form my dreams. Media has played an important role in shaping me as a person. As for now, I still enjoy watching films and series, but I know that they do not reflect reality, therefore they don’t have as much of an impact on me anymore. The form of media that is omnipresent in my life right now is social medias. Which unfortunately, I would be better off without. I overuse them, I scroll for hours looking at others’ peoples lives, or rather what they want me to believe their lives are. This rarely leaves me indifferent. Unwillingly, I compare myself to these people and wonder what I could do to be more like them. I often think that I should limit my screen time, unfollow certain accounts, try to have more control over what I see online. I am aware of the negative impact these platforms have on me, so why do I keep going back to them? Why after deleting Instagram, I feel the need to download it back after one day?
Because I am addicted, I need validation, I fear missing out, a feeling that something important will happen but I won’t know because I didn’t check my socials, when I know that for most of the time it is a waste of my time, energy, and sanity.

And that, my friends, is on toxic relationships.

– Zuzanna Pieczka, 13932608


Published by Life in Media

Website dedicated to the Media Life/Life in Media project of Mark Deuze, Professor of Media Studies, University of Amsterdam (The Netherlands).

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