Our society is in deep distress. Rising rates of depression, anxiety, and impulse control problems are straining our social fabric and stoking fear, anger, and divisiveness. It’s taking a toll on people individually and collectively. And as problems continue to mount, it can be hard to sustain hope that solutions will be found. Some say the problems have been greatly exacerbated by the rise of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are largely responsible. These platforms, left mostly unchecked, have greatly expanded the capabilities angry and hostile users to spread hate and foment violence. at the expense of moderation and even-handedness.  Is the use of social media a significant cause of the rise of these social problems? And, if so, what can be done to turn things around? In this talk, WCEC Leader, Bart Worden, looks at some of the effects of social media on attitudes and behavior and considers some changes that might mitigate some of the downsides of our technically connected age.

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