Most US adults believe social media is bad for democracy: Study
Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, and YouTube, according to nearly two-thirds of survey respondents from the United States, have harmed democracy, a new study shows.
A recent Pew Research Center survey showed that the majority of American adults believe that social media has harmed democracy.
Along with the United States, 19 other nations were polled by Pew researchers, including France, “Israel”, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada. In the countries surveyed, a median of 57 percent of respondents said they thought social media had more positive effects on democracy than negative ones, while 35 percent disagreed.
However, the percentage among respondents from the United States was significantly lower.
Only 34% of respondents in the United States believed that social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp had a positive influence on democracy, while 64% believed the opposite. More Americans than residents of any other nation surveyed think that social media sites and the internet, in general, have widened political chasms.
According to the survey, 79 percent of Americans who took part indicated they thought people's political ideas become more polarized as a result of having access to the internet and social media platforms, while 69 percent of respondents said that they believe social media and the internet have led to a decline in politeness in political discourse.
As social media platforms have grown in popularity, these online forums have become popular places to discuss politics and social concerns.
Meanwhile, countless studies have demonstrated how profoundly democracy is undermined by the echo chambers that develop on these platforms, as well as the disinformation that they facilitate and the possibility of political spying.
The majority of those who responded to the Pew survey were aware of this threat as well, particularly in relation to the spread of false information.
A median of 84 percent of respondents from all the nations polled illustrated that social media and internet access make it simpler to mislead and influence people.
According to another analysis of the same survey, the dissemination of incorrect information online is considered a "serious concern" by 70% of respondents across the 19 countries polled.