For this assignment, you will read the case study below and examine it from the three main sociological theoretical perspectives: structural-functionalist theory, conflict theory, and symbolic interactionist theory. Include in your response the core concepts of culture, structure, and power.
Social media was introduced to stay connected but has evolved into a way of life. Social media began in the early 2000s with MySpace and has since expanded to many other platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc. Facebook was known to have over 2.28 billion users in 2018 and is still the most used social media platform (Ourworldindata.com, 2019). Multiple research studies have looked at the effect social media has on its users with mixed results. Some of the adverse effects include cyberbullying, an increase in mental health disorders, and self-harm. Some of the positive aspects of social media are meeting new people, maintaining friendships, empowering introverts, and strengthening social awareness. Whether we like social media or not, it is here to stay. It has become how companies advertise to their consumers, families remain in contact with each other, and political battles fought.
After reading the case study, answer the following questions in an essay format of 500-600 words. Ensure that you have an introduction, body, and conclusion.
- Using the functionalist theory, answer the following prompts. Indicate how social media has positively affected society. Indicate how social media has negatively affected society. Explain what function social media serves in our society.
- Using the conflict theory, answer the following prompts. Describe how social media has affected or exposed the inequality in our society. Describe how social media has acted as a form of power in our society. Identify how the impact of social media and the power that it has enacted can be changed.
- Using the symbolic interactionist theory, answer the following prompts. Summarize how people interpret and understand the world based on social media. State how social media has shaped the reality of experiences.
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