Role of Social Media in increasing Polarisation in the society


  • Overview
  • Causes and Effects of Social Media
  • Political Polarisation


Polarisation has become an extreme threat to democracy in the age of social media,
which has provided the freedom to express one’s points of view and opinions on issues of
interest. Social media has its own positive and negative effects. It has brought people closer
around the globe. At the same time, it has created boundaries and divisions more rigorously than people would have ever done in person.
Educational institutes should create awareness regarding the fair use of social sites where
appreciation and criticism are accepted gladly. It will enhance the importance of the role of social media as Scholars specified that it is the main reason behind the changing pattern of Political Polarisation universally.

Causes and effects of Social Media

One of the main reasons behind this division is the role of social media which is rapidly
growing with technology. These social media sites and news channels are considered the main reason for the polarisation in society. Studies have shown Effects concern over the increasing division between left and right-wing parties in various countries.
Another cause of polarisation is the transfer of parties’ focus from unifying objectives to
group identities. Also, the fact that anyone can publish anything that gains views and clicks is
replacing that old system which includes fact-checking and professionalisation. The new
system is basically a non-system that is dissected and generally leaderless.
The authenticity of the news is not necessary as long as it will not the sentiments of
people. The usage of rhetoric-based expressions and logic has become a norm in the domain
of social media. The polarisation of political issues and ideology will have grave
consequences in future that should be addressed timely. This way, societies will be safe from
further separation and disintegration.
The effects of social media are not limited to mere differences in political opinions. It has
affected the psychological well-being of people as well. People usually align themselves with the
ideas of social media influencers, news reporters, bloggers and columnists who share the same
belief and loyalty. By constantly reading the posts and comments of these influencers, they build
confidence in their notion. People usually get engaged with those people who contribute to
similar ideologies, and they create an online community.

Political polarisation

The polarisation in politics and issues of leadership has caused damage to normal
friendships and relationships. The news channels have made it a habit to invite the so-called
experts who use foul language during debates. Political talk has become polarised, and it has
become polarising on social media as well.
Another problem that social experiments indicate is the lack of tolerance for the
adversary in political opinions and views. They are less critical of their party’s policies and more of the opposing party’s leadership and policies. People will deliberately post offensive comments and remarks to the opposite group if their political leaders do something strange.
Pakistan has a long history of political instability, and the recent wave of polarisation has
taken it to a significant level. It has produced several violent incidents. Clashes with institutionsof law and order have become routine for people. The youth of the country was found lesser
tolerant than the older generation. They get affected by political instability and fail to learn the basic principles of creative thinking.
To conclude this article, it is important to understand that it’s time to resolve these issues
by educating people about creative thinking and questioning. Moreover, people should be guided and trained on the professional and acceptable use of Social Media to avoid destructive influence on the masses.

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