Is social media challenging our moral upbringing?

The content we create and consume seems to be corrupting our traditional values

In Summary

• It is common to come online and see someone trending based on a clip that was recorded, posted and then deleted later on. 

• Once those videos reach the public domain, those involved adopt the mindset of 'it is what it is.'

Youth use social media
Youth use social media
Image: FILE

Social media today provides us with a platform where we almost more than often consume a whole lot of information.  

With social media, comes the reliance on algorithms that can identify a user’s online behaviour and recommend content based on one’s preferences. 

They basically give insight on a user’s past ranking signals such as their likes, what content they interact with by subscribing or visiting a link that is provided or even the follows made on a post or an account. 

Based on different algorithms, we tend to consume information that we have grown accustomed to and some which is totally new but is suggested and thought that we may like it. 

A perfect source of newly suggested content by an algorithm comes from the reposts we get from accounts of our online friends. 

Take for instance TikTok where when a friend reposts a short video, most of the time, the video lands on your For You Page (FYP) and based on how you interact with the clip, the algorithm may or may not suggest more related content to enhance your user experience. 

As we narrow down to the user-generated content, like I said, there is a magnitude of information that we consume. 

It is safe to say that there are quite a number of content creators out there today that generate loads of content that resonates with different audiences.

My question is when did we start creating content just for the sake of doing it while we compromise our traditional values? 

Those moral and ethical principles that were passed down from generation to generation that are meant or rather said, to strengthen society and families? 

I get it that content creation in today’s day and era is a serious money maker but is it only me or are some individuals kind off overstepping it to a point that it is trickling down to our kids? 

What happened to our personal, cultural values? 

Recently, I was having a discussion with a couple of friends on how young people in our country are making use of social media when they are on holidays. 

The kind of access that we had back then to electronic devices, let alone the internet, is completely different from the one that the late Gen Z’s and the generation after, Generation Alpha and the likes, have access to.

“It is very common to one day wake up and find someone, whom you have never seen or heard off before, trending on X or TikTok based on a tape they recorded, posted and deleted,” one friend said. 

“Kids nowadays are so bold that they record themselves doing the did and post on their stories. Mnakumbuka venye there was a recent wave of high school kids recording themselves doing the did and some wanafanya hizo vituko even in public spaces?” another friend commented.  

“Not only the kids but even grownups are doing it and teasing it on social media and deleting the clips later on,” another friend said. 

No shade to those who make money out of recording such videos but when did we get so comfortable with blatantly posting such explicit content on socials that are meant to engage and interact? 

It is so common to a point that when those videos are out there in the public, those involved have adopted the mindset of, ‘watu wataongea na itaisha tu,’ or ‘it is what it is.’ 

When did it become a normal thing to see high school kids posting such content on their social accounts? 

With this new wave of technology, there is no actual manual to morally raising a child but what fun childhood memories are we instilling in our children? The moral and ethical principles? 

What kind of exposure are we giving them? 

Back then, most of us were raised by the community but in this new era, coming close to someone’s child can land you into problems that can be avoided. 

Is social media content corrupting and challenging our moral upbringing? 

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