It is no hidden reality that everyone is busy nowadays in trying to fit into an ever narrowing social ideal because that is how others want them to act. This social ideal is impressed upon a mass population by our social media which makes people insecure and uncomfortable with how they naturally are. Teenagers form the most vulnerable and most susceptible age group. This is because they very easily become a prey to the propaganda instigated by social media which is about looking thinner and more beautiful. The craze to look like the famous TV stars has reached its zenith currently because it seems like there is no place for a kid in our society anymore who does not look like a model. Just like what we watched on Monday, as Jean Kilbourne said, we cannot be the one we watched on TV, ads or magazines since it is not real. An ideal body image portrayed by magazines and television is always photoshoped. Even before I post a selfie on Facebook or Instagram, I usually use an app to prettify and make me looks thinner and whiter. Research also supports this idea that social media negatively influences body image and the research shows that girls are hurt even more than boys in this matter. This practice of social media to impose an ideal on our teenagers is highly objectionable in my opinion. Research claims that the US media environment is so sexually charged that it forces female to “fit into an ever narrowing ideal of female beauty”. Every day we see many young girls pressurized by our society and culture into fitting into defined sizes for chest, waist, and hips. This formula of “36-24-36” is mentioned in many songs and it is popularized by music and fashion alike. It should not be forgotten that it influences women in a devastating way. This is because teenagers in particular stress so much in adjusting their bodies according to a set physical measurement formula that it makes many clinically depressed.
Written by Jinghan Wang
With the development of science and technology, most people have a smart phone, even not expect children and teens. Within the popularity of the social media bring us convenience, it brings the crisis to teenagers as well. In recent years, people’s dissatisfaction of their body is widespread. Moreover, the bulk of empirical evidence also shows that low self-esteem, body dissatisfaction is related to eating disorders, low life satisfaction and high correlation. Models’ body shape constantly present in the mass media and share on Facebook, Instagram and other social media affects the teenagers’ body satisfaction.According to the data from Katie Lepi’s post, there is over 95% of teens (12-17) use the Internet and 81% use social media. Most of the content that teenagers share is Selfies and of cause, girls use social networks more frequently than the boys, 14 years and older of adolescents using social networks more frequently than the adolescents 12 and 13 year olds. I feel definitely agree that social media influences teen as that age on body image. As my personal experience, I was pretty fat before 14 years old, and from that time, I started to care about my appearance and lose weight. At that time I had tried diet pill and was on a diet. I think what makes me do so is because during and after adolescence, teenagers especially girls are more care about her appearance and self-respect is stronger. People will be ideal for these thin images of internalization, named “body ideal internalization”. This idea is from Caroline Knorr’s article, She asked if social media give teens a negative body image. She believes that social media do influences teens but parents should play the important role to give teenagers a right concept. As my opinion, body image doesn’t just happen. It’s a complex phenomenon influenced by many factors, including parents, peers, and social contexts. But in this modern and technological society, Facebook and other social media play a powerful role in shaping teenagers’ body image and body satisfaction.
Written by Jinghan Wang