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Facebook Addiction Disorder

Facebook Addiction


ST.CROIX- Facebook Addiction Disorder is a real disorder affecting Facebook users. Since Facebook has 350 million members who spend 10 billion minutes on the site each day. Many are developing Facebook Addiction Disorder and find it difficult to defeat.

Facebook Addiction Disorder is not officially a diagnosed medical treatment but it is recognized by psychologists as a new mental health disorder. At the University of the Virgin Islands, there are many students who use social media like Facebook.

According to Psych Central website, a mental health social network, over 95 percent of graduate students and undergraduate students have a Facebook account.

It is a major issue with college students mainly because of the growing addiction involved with it. Two UVI counselors plus a UVI student were interviewed about Facebook Addiction Disorder and the growing problem.

Shanice Rawlins is a nursing major at UVI and avid Facebook user. Rawlins admits that she is an abnormal Facebook user and spends more than six hours on social media every chance she gets, which is almost every day.

“It’s all about control and balance. [Facebook] is both light and dark and serves its purpose but it all depends on the user,” she said.

Facing reality: A happy user offline and living life
Facing reality: A happy user offline and living life

Rawlins defines Facebook as a way to connect to friends and relatives that are in distant places, including those she can not communicate with via phone. Although Rawlins considers herself a regular Facebook user, she says she is not an addict.

“If Facebook shuts down I would be happy, because it usually leads me to procrastinate,” she said. Rawlins realizes procrastination affects her work progress in completing assignments.

“I use Facebook to talk to people that I cannot call and leave a message for,” Rawlins said. “On the Facebook activity which takes up most of my time, I’d say games.”

When given the choice between Facebook and Twitter, Rawlins preferred Facebook.

“I prefer Facebook because although you can do a lot of stuff with Twitter, it turns into a boring routine,” she said.”However, with Facebook, you can always find something interesting and new happening on your page or another user’s page.”

For students struggling with F.A.D, Rawlins offers advice.

“Facebook Addiction can be helped if a person finds help from someone they trust,” she said.” Find professional sources out there that can help the addiction. Try to lessen the hours spent on Facebook or do a Facebook fast and go on a diet.”

Although Rawlins admits control any addiction can be hard, reiterates an earlier point.

“It’s not easy but with time, faith, and patience, it can be cured,” she said. ” I believe that [Facebook] Addiction can be cured. It’s all about control and balance.”

Students can find help from faculty members on campus.

Mrs. Sherrayn Garcia, a UVI counselor and Academic advisor, is a Facebook user who spends less than three hours a week on the site. Despite ever meeting a student who is a self-proclaimed Facebook addict or anyone clinically diagnosed as a Facebook Addict,  she has worked in the field of addiction and is aware that Facebook can become one.

“Facebook is a medium in which people all over the world can connect on a personal and professional basis,” Garcia said. However she states it has both its advantages and disadvantages.

Offline: Mrs. Garcia’s take on Facebook Addiction
Offline: Mrs. Garcia’s take on Facebook Addiction

“While many people use it to either connect to their family and friends by sharing recent pictures and stories, promoting a product and connecting to a wider market, or police investigators  using it to solve crimes; many people use it as a tool to commit crimes such as identity theft, stalking, assault and even murder,” she said.

Though not directly linked to Facebook addiction, Garcia mentions accounts of cyber bullying.

“I have dealt with students who have been victims of cyber bullying via Facebook, which has turned physically violent right here on campus, all because of what was posted on Facebook the night before,” she said.

This is why she educates her students on Facebook etiquette.

“I educate my students of the appropriate use as well as the dangers of Facebook in hopes that they will listen and use caution while they are on Facebook.”

Garcia encourages her students to reduce the amount of time spent on the site, especially when spending more time on the site than on studying for class assignments.

In addition, Garcia states that self-acknowledgement and willingness to get help for an addiction are key steps, an addict can take.

“While there are only programs for drug, alcohol, and sex addiction I am not sure about a program for Facebook Addiction,” Garcia said. “However, individuals can seek support from family and friends who are not addicted to Facebook themselves.”

Mrs. Patricia Towal, UVI Career Services Supervisor and  guidance counselor, has experience in helping students overcome social media problems, including that of Facebook.

Face to Face: Patricia Patricia Towal provides information about Facebook Addiction
Face to Face: Patricia Patricia Towal provides information about Facebook Addiction

“Yes, I have dealt with students on the problem of Facebook Addiction,” Towal said. “In fact, the faculty has discussed the matter of students spending too much time on Facebook.”

Towal mentions it can me tempting and distracting.

Referencing an episode of Star Trek, Towal recounts when two members of the crew were fascinated in playing a game and when more crew members became involved, nothing else was done.

Despite not having a Facebook account, Towal believes Facebook has many uses and can be an asset, yet says that it can be destructive when out of control and unsupervised.

“In general, social media is so comfortable that people develop an alter ego doing stuff regrettably and unusual– not normal,” Towal said.

Towal, like others, shared tips to overcoming Facebook Addiction.

“First, a person has to realize their awkwardness with the quantity of time spent on Facebook,” Towal said. “Second, once awareness of addiction has been realized, set a plan.” A plan which may include a limit or bar of oneself from Facebook.

“Finally, be disciplined and firm on going through with the plan.”

If one follows the advice mentioned, he or she can begin to live a healthier life without the constraint of social networking.

Kappa Gamma’s Freestyle Fridays a success

Kappa Gamma’s Freestyle Fridays a success

Felicia Emmanuel|

ST. CROIX- University of the Virgin Islands students on Sept. 20 gathered around the Student Activities center to watch fellow students exhibit their freestyling talents during Freestyle Friday.

Freestyle rap is a spontaneous performance done without preparation.

Emulating BET’s 106 & Park segment, Freestyle Fridays allow UVI students to exhibit their rapping creativity, while allowing their peers to vote on the best performance. The winner would then defend his or her title at the next Freestyle Friday.

“The purpose of Freestyle Friday is to bring life and spirit to campus,” said Sheena Tonge, vice president of Kappa Gamma.

“We usually have a rap battle,” Tonge said. However, lack of contestants led to a decision not to have a match.

 Junior "Judah VI" and others participants look on as rapper drops his verse
Junior “Judah VI” and others participants look on as rapper drops his verse

Despite having no contest, students still showed their support.

This was especially encouraging to part-time UVI student and DJ Charles “Daddy Pollo” Goodings Jr. Goodings, 22, believes support from his peers helped make the occasion successful.

“I surprised myself,” Goodings said. “I really didn’t expect to see so many people come out. Just the fact that I’m playing, people came out to support.”

He has been a DJ at other Kappa Gamma events such as on-campus basketball games and Dancehall Cardio.

“Kappa Gamma supports students doing big things,” Tonge said.

In terms of participation, Kappa Gamma President Junior “Judah VI” Garcia was no exception.

Garcia dropped some verses to Nicki Minaj’s “Beez in the Trap.”

The occasion ended on a festive note as friends of Khalid Edwards held a surprise birthday celebration in his honor.

Overall, students such as Remah Asad were pleased with the outcome. She felt it brought the students together as one.

“The music and allowing everyone to be themselves in an environment that is not strictly professional is always fun and good,” she said. “It’s like an appreciation event towards the students.”

Students unfamiliar with Kappa Gamma should know it is a marketing and management group.

“Clubs and organizations on campus would plan events and the events would not turn out the way they would want to in terms of publicizing the event. Therefore, Kappa Gamma was put in place to help with the media,”  Tonge said.

Students look on to support peers as they participate at freestyle friday
Students look on to support peers as they participate at freestyle friday

By using sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, Kappa Gamma utilizes them all to the host club’s or organization’s advantage.

Their involvement, however, does not end with promotional work. Kappa Gamma secures volunteers to help with clean up.

Students interested in Kappa Gamma events can reach out to them.

“We always have flyers up,” Tonge said. “We have a [Facebook] page you can contact Mr. Garcia or you can contact myself.”

Students can also go to Mrs. Hedda Finch-Simpson’s office in the Student Activities Center for more information about the club.

Tonge added that interested students can speak with Kappa Gamma members at their events.

Once there, the organization can acquire contact information.