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What you can do when you’re not using social media

Ciaran Foster // 18th November 2018

Intern-al Issues is a fortnightly blog written by our Intern Ciaran that looks at the latest issues and trends in digital marketing. Enjoy!

Facebook and Instagram have now introduced new limiting tools for their platforms, to allow users to cut back on their time spent on the apps.

Under settings on the Facebook app, there is an option for ‘Your Time on Facebook.’ Following this link, you have access to your app usage per day and more options to manage your time and notifications.

Under this section, you can control the notifications you receive, and also set a daily reminder, which sends you a notification once you have passed the usage time limit you set for yourself.

It may seem counterintuitive for me to write on a topic such as this, but social media addiction is a common issue these days, and these changes will allow people to manage their time on social media more effectively. Those in the grip of a social media addiction have been known to check their phone hundreds of times a day just to satisfy their needs, and would benefit greatly from an in-app usage limit.

The changes on Facebook and Instagram come amid a drop in the usage of Facebook in the US, and a hit to the company’s stocks. After Facebook’s data breach and doubts over the accuracy of its information, the company has made the move to show friends and family’s posts and activity to its users, ahead of news articles and posts from pages. The limiting feature appears to be a continued step in this direction, as it guarantees users will spend less time on the app and consume more relevant content.

Social media is one of the most integral, modern tools of the future, which is why I think that these features are necessary and important, so that we can filter our usage and be more productive on our social media apps. Users will always be more satisfied with more relevant content, and the changes allow affected users to control their usage too.

If you choose to set yourself a daily limit for social media, or cut back on your usage, I have compiled a short list of things you can do when you’re not on social media or online.

Read a book

Books require a significant attention span, much greater than a news feed, so start simple and work your way up. Kindles don’t count.

Exercise

Exercise is a great way to refresh the mind and body.

Learn an instrument or a language

Not at the same time, but everyone has at least one instrument or language they would like to be able to play or speak. Now is your opportunity.

 

Although social media is the tool of the future, it’s important to do other things as well. Whether you need a limiting feature or not, spend your time online effectively, so that you can enjoy your time offline as well.

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Ciaran Foster

Ciaran is a Media and Communications student from Perth. He has a passion for anything film or sports related, or both (Shaolin Soccer).

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