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Identity Crisis in Popular Media


Now more than ever is there a rising in technology, with social media such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and so on, the ways of self-expression and image are essentially endless, and essentially public. Social media has been made to be an outlet for socializing, sharing opinions, making plans, and self-expression. However, with the rise in popularity of these venues, it’s difficult to truly define yourself and see yourself how you would with an entire friends list watching your every move.

With that said, spite the negative aspects of too much social media, modern society seems nearly addicted to it; constantly posting status updates, tweeting responses to friends and the public, and posting images of themselves, or as nearly anyone technologically savvy would refer to as “selfies”. So, we ask ourselves, why are we not sure of who we are and what we really like? Well, it’s because you no longer have to be famous, or even popular to struggle with, let alone keep up a public image. Self-perception is now a changing thing, applicable only to the newest social and physical trends.

Ideally, we like to think that the notion of self-perception is how we view ourselves, how we connect with ourselves and understand ourselves rooted from deep within; that our self-image is something that outer factors can’t alter or influence. However, that is now just simply what it sounds to be – an ideal. Studies show that 90% of the United States Internet users alone visit and follow social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at least on a monthly basis (Comscore, It’s a Social World 2011). This means that we as social, thriving beings are feeding off of and into outward perception, putting effort into the altering and filtering of images to create a more appealing look, updating statuses on a regular basis to not just voice true opinion, but to gain followers and admirers through popularity.

We now live in a world where if something does not get enough credit, appreciation, or in other words, “likes”, we delete it and replace it with something marketed for those who are looking. No longer is this society expressing true self-image and expression, but merely whatever is trending and considered to be the best. The notion that having an identity crisis only happens to the powerful, rich, and famous is sadly no longer true; it’s happening behind many computer screens, tablets, phones, and faces.