Social media is continuously becoming an integral part of the current and the next generation of youths’ everyday life . From conducting a simple research about something to reading the news every morning, people now rely on the use of social media and the World Wide Web to look for all sorts of information. Social media, however, is a unique technology that allows for a two-way type of communication between large groups of individuals.
The thing with this type of communication is that it is not limited by any form of physical constraint such as geographical location or even the culture of the participants involved because everyone can get involved as long as they are connected to the social media platform being talked about. The objective of this paper is to propose a research concerning the way how teenagers’ use of social media affect the reputation of their political parents.
Research Question and Methodology
The specific research question that this study will attempt to answer would be “how does teenagers’ use of social media affect the reputation of their political parents”. A qualitative descriptive research design will be used in order to objectively arrive at a conclusion to the said question. The participants that will be the focus of the review and investigation would be the sons and daughters of some of the prominent politicians in the country. Basically, the authors will investigate their social media practices, regardless whether they can be considered as good or bad; or as ethical or not; and assess the impact of their social media practices and activities on the reputation of any part of their family circle who holds a position in any one of the political bodies in the country.
The data gathering procedure starts by collecting information regarding the participants’ social media accounts and of course the types of activities that they engage in whether they use their accounts. Screen shots and images of their activities will be recorded as a form of evidence, especially, during the data analysis process. These images will then be shown to a selected number of people, who would also be considered as the participants in the study and be asked to answer a questionnaire that contains several open ended questions such as but may not be limited to: do you approve of this image, why or why not?; what kind of family do you think the owner of the profile belongs to, why or why not?; would you want the user’s parents to be in the government as one of our policy makers, why or why not?.
Notice that all of the questions are directly aimed at determining the target population’s perception on the social media practices of the politicians’ sons and or daughters, and the relationship of such perception to the politicians’ reputation.
Basically, this proposed study is based on the assumption that irresponsible social media use by teenagers (i.e. sons and daughters of politicians) can negatively affect the reputation (i.e. public’s perception) of their politician parents.
As with any other form of research that relies on information provided by its participants as the primary source of data, an informed consent form will be supplied in this study. The participants will be asked to read and sign in the informed consent form—an act which would symbolize their voluntary participation in the current study. One important ethical issue that must be raised to the research and ethics panel members would be the act of stalking the social media accounts of the politicians’ sons and daughters.
Technically, they may also be considered as participants in the study and therefore must receive a corresponding informed consent form which they would have to sign. However, the researcher believes that this need not be an issue because social media platforms have always enabled features that allow other users to check the profiles of other users even on a regular basis and that the teenager sons and daughters of politicians joined such platforms knowing that their profile and therefore profile actions would most likely be made available to anyone.
Communicating the Results
The results would mainly be based on the researchers’ analysis of the results of the questionnaires containing the open ended responses of the participants regarding their perception on the teenagers’ use of social media and its appropriateness. Basically, a negative perception on inappropriate use of social media accounts may be seen and interpreted as an affirmation to the research hypothesis formulated earlier that suggests that the teenagers’ inappropriate use of social media accounts negatively affects the reputation of their politician parents.
Significance of the Research
The invention of social media is one of the greatest technological marvels in the digital era . It enables one person to communicate to virtually anyone in the planet regardless of his present location, age, gender, culture, or any variation in his demographic classification . It is a tool that has successfully removed the different hardline barriers to successful communication . This is, in fact, why marketing and advertising professionals have long capitalized on the potential of social media platforms as a tool. To put it simply, social media is a tool that can change a lot of lives . The change that it would bring would most likely be categorized into just two: positive and negative change. This is what was explored in the study (i.e. the positivity or the negativity of the effects of teenagers’ use of social media on the reputation of their politician parents).
One of the major benefits and effects of social media is constant connection . The next question in this case would be does anyone really need to be constantly connected to everyone in their circle? While it may indeed be an advantage to be constantly connected to friends, peers, and acquaintances, albeit in a virtual environment only, most people, especially teenagers, are not properly educated and matured enough to use that constant connectivity responsibly and appropriately .
This is where the purpose and significance of this research would come in. This research aims to serve as an eye opener on the possible negative effects of being constantly connected by social media, especially when this feature gets abused by irresponsible and improperly educated individuals, although the focus is on the reputation of the politicians and the way how they educate their teenage sons or daughters regarding the proper etiquette in the cyber community.
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