Social Media Shaming and COVID-19

In this article by D.T. Max, the effects of social media on the lives and mental health of people in their real lives are detailed. With so many people being stuck at home with nothing but technology as their outlet, this article is extremely relevant. Technology has given people a source of entertainment, through increased shows to stream, and more connection to world news. That said, technology has also created an avenue for others to key-in on the lives of certain people, especially those in the public eye. This has proven to be more negative than positive due to social media users critiquing every detail in posts and actions of said people. Furthermore, critiquing such people during this pandemic makes no sense, because like everyone else, they are new to our new way of life, and learn about, COVID little-by-little, like every day. Max gives a great example of this when he talks about Dr. Rokita, a Polish physician who committed suicide because of public scrutiny regarding his actions, before even knowing he had the coronnavirus.

As Max details, the coronavirus was new to the world, and there were no cases in Poland. Upon getting tested for the virus, Dr. Rokita continued to engage in his routine activities because, like many people, he didn’t know much about it, and since there were no cases in Poland, he didn’t think he had it. Unfortunately, Dr. Rokita did have it, and he received extreme scrutiny from the public because of his “negligent” actions. When all was said and done, Dr. Rokita committed suicide because he could no longer bare the horrific treatment he and his family were receiving.

From this story, I believe that readers should take heed and when browsing through social media, be a little more forgiving for mistakes. People aren’t perfect, even when they’re trying to paint their lives as such on social media and everyone has to remember that in order to avoid overly shaming people for their mistakes, ESPECIALLY during this pandemic where people are still acclimating to our new way of life.

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