FEELter: Keeping Up with Social Media in the Philippines

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FEELter: Keeping Up with Social Media in the Philippines

“As far as self-confidence goes, so much of social media is about approval, getting likes, comparing our lives to others’ – meanwhile, confidence is an inside job: it’s about how you feel about yourself regardless of what anyone else does or thinks. It’s a knowing that you’re human, you’re flawed, and you’re awesome in your own way.” – Jen Sincero.

The boom of the Internet gave birth to social media sites that allow us to interact with the people around the world. Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube are few examples that made a huge impact to daily lives of people specifically here in the Philippines.

Philippines is one of the top social media user in the world. According to 2019 report of We Are Social and Hootsuite, Philippines tops the most time spent online with 10 hours and 2 minutes daily. The Philippines also got the top spot when it comes to social media penetration with 99% of internet users are on at least one type of social media platform. The number of social media users in the Philippines has grown from 67 million to 76 million this year.

In a country with a population

“As far as self-confidence goes, so much of social media is about approval, getting likes, comparing our lives to others’ – meanwhile, confidence is an inside job: it’s about how you feel about yourself regardless of what anyone else does or thinks. It’s a knowing that you’re human, you’re flawed, and you’re awesome in your own way.” – Jen Sincero.

The boom of the Internet gave birth to social media sites that allow us to interact with the people around the world. Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and YouTube are few examples that made a huge impact to daily lives of people specifically here in the Philippines.

Philippines is one of the top social media user in the world. According to 2019 report of We Are Social and Hootsuite, Philippines tops the most time spent online with 10 hours and 2 minutes daily. The Philippines also got the top spot when it comes to social media penetration with 99% of internet users are on at least one type of social media platform. The number of social media users in the Philippines has grown from 67 million to 76 million this year.

In a country with a population of more than a hundred million, here lives a girl who is struggling to keep up with the fast pace of social media. This make her feel different, strange in a sense to the people of her age, make her feel not belong, an outcast and this girl is me.

Most of us are aware of social media and in maybe most of us have a social media account. Facebook is my first ever social media account. It is the only platform I use for many years. Even though I visit this site daily, I am still most of the time not updated in the trends. For example the so called “millennial terms” like LOL, SMH, WYD. This is where I started to feel the disconnection with other people. I spends most of my time with my friends and social media topics are unavoidable, so sometimes I can’t understand the conversations. I even went to the extent of forcing mysel to laugh just to fit in.

I find it weird that most of my friends have friends from different sections or schools. I literally asked myself “How can they manage to become friends? I don’t even seen them hanging around with each other!” They said to me that they become friends through Facebook and the person with the most Facebook friends is entitled as “famous” . This is when I realize how big of an impact it is, I felt it might be cool to be called as “famous” but I am not so comfortable making friends in social media because I don’t know these people personally. But because most of my peers and family were into it, even though I don’t have an interest to that, I forced myself because I’m afraid to be left out.

Just recently, I made an Instagram account (a photo sharing site) by a recommendation of a friend. You will see a lot of good photos but what stick out with me the most are the photos about beauty and fashion. I am not the kind to put so much care about how I look or the way I dress, I just choose to whatever I am comfortable with. I saw a lot of people in my age spend a lot of effort for makeup or their “OOTD” (Outfit of the Day). I admit that I find these trend in beauty and fashion cute so I am engaged to try. I buy some of the trendy clothes but I found myself not comfortable in wearing those.

I realize its hard for me to be in social media. I feel like I am placed in a wrong generation where physical interactions were the most important. Its like I’m chasing an Olympian runner and it’s really hard to keep up. I know I need to adapt to the change in order to survive but it kills me, it kills me inside. Social media kills the true me and I feel so fake. Instead of making it as inspiration only, we tend to copy and paste it to our self. Am I the only one who feel this way? Do you also feel the same way too?

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