The Like Button and Depression
If you’ve watched the compelling and eye-opening Netflix documentary, The Social Dilemma, you are familiar with Justin Rosenstein. He is one of the many brilliant young tech developers who appear in the film to trumpet the personal and societal dangers caused by the very tools he helped create. The thirty-seven year old was the creator of the Facebook like button, all with good intent. But now, Rosenstein is not only wary of social media, but is sounding a warning about how social media hijacks and changes our lives. New research from the University of Texas at Austin has connected Facebook’s like button with heightened levels of depression and anxiety among adolescents. If a young person doesn’t get enough likes on their posts, they tend to become emotionally distressed. Our kids are navigating a world where they need to be affirmed in their value and worth. It won’t come from social media likes. It can only come from finding our place in this world as people made and loved by God.