Does Facebook cause more harm than good?  Does Facebook cause more harm then good?  

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Thus far, the posts have been fairly even-handed. Yes, FB negatives existed in other forms prior to FB, and if humans possessed no character flaws, they would not need social media to feed their sicknesses. The problem with FB is that it ENABLES, although the negatives enabled by texting and Tweeting probably outweigh those enabled by FB; ANY medium which provides the protection of distance enables the cowardly to attack relatively unscathed. The main problem with FB seems to be that many users, in addition to addicting to the rarified distillations of "real life" posted by other FBers [as "real" as "reality TV"], lose inhibitions which ought NOT to be lost, inhibitions which prevent gratuitous cruelty. However, TV and movies were wallowing in gratuitous cruelty and violence LONG before FB was conceived. And peer pressure is far from new. Although as a [retired] professor and as [very much present tense] involved aunt, I deplore much of what FB enables, my personal gripe concerns what OTHER media have done: anyone who blogs, watches YouTube, or merely READS online is urged to "Like" EVERTHING on FB; to "share" EVERYTHING on FB -- a few years ago, users arose en masse to berate Yahoo for thrusting its link to FB into EVERY article, regardless of a "turn off" button. I DEEPLY resent the ads which are forced onto my FB page, with their implication that I somehow endorsed them, and I have now inserted into my profile a disclaimer. [Have also done this on YouTube.] I have endorsed exactly ONE item on FB: a singer. I've made that plain as well. I find FB practices to be heavy-handed, manipulative, intrusive, and insulting. But young users, oriented so obsessively to self and to the actions/opinions of their peers, evidently find FB to be liberating. And we, as the older generation, CAN learn those vital facts which the young seem to express more readily at a computer screen than face to face.

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No, Facebook does not cause more harm than good. I think most of what happens on Facebook is harmless and a lot of it is even helpful.  The people who use Facebook for unfortunate purposes would find a way to do those things no matter the medium.  Facebook seems pretty well policed.

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It seems to me that most of the bad things we attribute to Facebook were going on already before it became popular. While there are certainly problems, I don't think that its net effect thus far has been negative. As the previous post says, I think that we are just beginning to adjust to new technologies like Facebook. The challenge will be in eliminating or limiting some of the potential for abuse while maintaining its openness.

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Facebook is simply a new medium in a relatively new technology, and as such, it is going through a "shakedown" period in which its advantages and disadvantages will come to light, and during which it will be used reasonably by some and abused by others.  I am sure people had similar conversations when the printing press, the telegram, the telephone, the radio, the movies, and the television were invented, some saying we were all going to hell in a hand basket and others embracing the new with no caution whatsoever. 

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I would have to agree with #3 in that as a teacher, I have seen the ugly side of facebook in the form of cyber bullying many times.  With that being said, my school uses "teacher pages" as a form of communication with students and parents.  Like anything in life it has some positive and negative traits. 

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I am not a member of FACEBOOK, so I am sure my opinions have limitations. However, as a family we live quite well without it, and we seem to have much more time than everybody else. I do not miss the stress of accepting or rejecting friends, or untagging photos, or experiencing the cyber bullying of my son. I meet real people in real time, skype my family and use the phone. I may getan account when I feel that it will be an advantage, but that hasn't happened yet...

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I think we'll become more and more vigilant to the problems posed by social media such as Facebook. It is basically a communication tool and it gives people a chance to express themselves in a technologically creative way. This is one of the positive aspects of the new things we can do with the internet.

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I would have to politely disagree with pohnpei. Too many horrible things have arisen from the use of social media sites such as Facebook. I know that one cannot go around eliminating something which does offer good points, but as a mother and teacher, all I have seen is the bad.

For example, the ease for child predators to contact children has risen with the advancement of this type of technology. Children, and teenagers alike, post pictures of them, their school, identifiable buildings, and mascots on social media sites. It does not take long for a child predator to find them based upon these pictures.

Second, the use of fake profiles in order to hurt people (as seen by the MySpace and Megan Meier case). Likewise, the ability to bully has risen as well. (Look at the speakers who go into the schools today and they are rampant with the problems with social media sites.)

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I don't think so.  I think it's hard to argue that Facebook causes a whole bunch of harm.  I suppose it gives young people another way to be mean to one another if they want to.  But it is also a very good way to stay in touch with friends.  So maybe it's more important for people who are out of high school, but I think it's generally not a bad thing.

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