By June Peers
On September 12, musical artist Lana Del Rey deactivated all of her social media accounts. The day before, she posted a video on Instagram, announcing her deactivation and explaining the reason behind her decision.
“I have so many other interests and other jobs I’m doing that require privacy and transparency,” Del Rey said.
Although the singer claims to want to keep her social circle smaller for the time being, many fans speculate that Del Rey deleted her social media accounts due to recent backlash from controversy.
This includes when she wore a mask which appeared to have holes in it at her book signing. Her fans thought this was a blatant display of her behaving irresponsibly during a pandemic. She later addressed people’s concerns by stating that there was plastic sewn on the inside.
Another issue that caused fallout online was her essay post on Instagram called “Question for the culture.” She expresses her frustration towards the media who claim her music “glamorizes abuse.” In this typewritten letter, Lana listed multiple celebrities, such as Ariana Grande and Beyoncé, who she believed were receiving less criticism when composing lyrics with similar themes as her.
The artist further wrote how the writers treated her differently from other singers, creating a double standard. Both of these incidents received a negative general reaction, and thereafter she faced greater scrutiny by the media.
Del Rey is one of a long list of celebrities who use deactivating social media as a way to avoid the public negativity sometimes involved in their careers. not the only celebrity who could not tolerate these social media platforms.
Millie Bobby Brown of “Stranger Things” fame, deleted Twitter after many photoshopped homophobic memes surfaced the internet in 2017. These photos with offensive captions were intended to appear as if she wrote these words herself. Brown was 14 years old at the time, and at such a young age, she was already a victim to cyberbullying.
Ed Sheeran quit social media as well to focus on his music rather than “seeing the world through a screen and not his eyes.”
While celebrities and their social media accounts are much more public than the average person, it is clear that teens spend much time on social media. According to the Child Mind Institute, teenagers who spent more time on social media were 13 to 66 percent more likely to be diagnosed with depression than those who were inactive.
It is evident that social media contributes to self-consciousness in adolescents, which has shown to potentially lead to mental illness.
“People assume things about you that are not true based on your appearance and how you present yourself online,” freshman Aleeza Syeda said.
Online users receive a distorted perception of others from what they view on social media. The pictures on a person’s online page are only fragments of their life they display, whether those people are celebrities like Lana Del Rey or students on campus.
Yet, when people view these photos, they are often consumed with the desire to look a certain way or live a certain lifestyle. Insecurities arise when unattainable standards are held in comparison to those who seem almost flawless. In contrast, when people are not on social media, there is less to compare themselves to since they are not staring at manufactured and artificial photographs.
Sometimes the best solution to poor mental health is to delete all social media apps. Even celebrities whose job is to maintain their image decide to take breaks. Make an effort for one day to restrict yourself from using any apps that have a negative impact on your peace of mind, and see how much of a difference it can make.