As COVID-19 has struck the world and changed peoples lives and society as we once knew it. A key aspect that has been changing in front of our eyes is the use of the internet and social media, and how we have changed our ways of using it. I personally have seen change in the way I use the internet and social media, one of which is that I use it more than usual after COVID-19 hit. I have a lot more freetime, considering there haven’t been sporting events, friend and family gatherings, or in person school. Since these are all cancelled or in a completely different format, I always seem to be on my phone scrolling through social media such as Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Youtube, or TikTok. I have been using social media platforms more than ever before, because it gives me a sense of connectivity to my friends and the world. I seemed to use it as a time waster and recently all we have had is time. My main platforms are Snapchat and Instagram, but whenever I am bored of them I use TikTok. TikTok is a social media platform where people can post short clips of dancing or whatever they please. I and othe people use the app as a scapegoat to kill time. Also, Instagram seems to be my main source of news mainly because I have already been on the app and it seems more accessible. I could swipe through all of the things I do not want to hear about and learn about what is going on very quickly.
As the pandemic took over life as we once knew it, and things we used to take for granted such as movie theaters shut down, I turned to the internet to provide me with an alternative for fulfilling these needs. I started to stream movies and TV shows a lot more through the internet on sites such as Hulu, Netflix, and Xfinity On Demand. My family and I used to love going to the movie theater, making a trip there at least once every two weeks. When COVID-19 shut them down completely, we were in need of our family time. Consequently, we began using Xfinity on Demand, a service that allows users to rent new movies that would originally be in theaters at home. This was a game changer because you could rent the movie for a better price than what you could get 4 tickets at the theater itself. This let my family continue to do our family routine at a cheaper price and a more comfortable spot.
Similarly, as movie theaters shut down, so did malls and most stores where you would buy things other than food or medicine. Considering the shut down of these stores during the quarantine people started switching over to online shopping on sites such as Amazon or Ebay. I use the Amazon App quite frequently to get whatever I need at a good price and shipped right to my doorstep. This pandemic hurt a lot of companies but it did not hurt Amazon, it actually skyrocketed the huge corporation, doubling their net profit from last year to this year. Amazon has been advertising differently on television by showing their attention to detail and care they take in making sure the customer is satisfied. They also illustrate the trust and care they have for all of their employees, a crucial part of running any business. Amazon also displays their safety with deliveries amid COVID-19. Their demeanor and image gives off a feeling that they care about their workers and it makes me want to use their platform.
On the contrary, the amount of time everyone, including myself, has been using the internet is in my opinion unhealthy. We have relied on the internet to be our main source of entertainment and we are taking away the ability to be social in real life. I believe that as we continue to use the internet at such a high rate, people will lose social skills and become socially inadapt. I have personally seen what the internet has done to our younger society by them choosing to play video games instead of playing outside with their friends. They are losing contact with people in society, which in long term will affect their social skills negatively.
In conclusion, I have seen a big change in the way I have used the internet entirely. At first I thought using a lot of electronics was a poor use of my time. Now, as I have thought more deeply, I have begun using more services that I wasn’t able to earlier. Whether it’s online streaming services such as Xfinity On Demand to keep our family tradition of watching new movies, or an increase in online shopping on Amazon. Furthermore, I did use the internet as an escape to entertain me and keep me connected to the world and my friends, through social media platforms such as Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok.