weBelong aims to be toxic-free social networking app
Toxic-free social networking
It's been around a year since weBelong has been launched. From the beggining of the day, weBelong team believes that weBelong should be toxic-free social media.
weBelong celebrates differences
The reason why weBelong cherishes being toxic-free is about celebrating differences. There are so many different people in the world, people with ADHD, our skin is different, our sexual orientation is different, our recognition toward gender is different, our belief is very different. weBelong is trying to be inclusive place where all those differences can belong that peoole should not compare them with others. People should not care about number of likes or followers. It will lead to anxiety or depression.
Social Networking and toxicity
There are so many apps where people can share their messages, photos, and videos. But every time I upload something on other social media, I get anxious.
"How many likes do I get?" "Do people care about my post?"
This makes me so anxious and if I don't get much attention, I just delete the content.
Why is this happening?
Social networking app and mental health
Before I have social media, I used to use social networking app simply based on commenting each other. Sometimes it goes wrong but entirely peoople try to discuss and express their true feelings without getting anxious.
After emerging social media, it became all about numbers. On Instagram, tiktok or Twitter, people just care about number of likes, number of followers, not what we talk about.
Instagram is toxic
I don't oppose to using instagram, but I would say people should aware that it could be toxic.
According to Lena Firestone of PsychAlive.org, there are several negative impacts on mental health such as body image issues, bullies, fear of missing out, anxiety, depression and loneliness.
I talked to many of users on weBelong as well, and many of them say they develop eating disorder and body image issues as well. Instagram is a place where people show off their "COOL" life.
“Instagram allows people to live their lives through a filter,” said Nicholas Caitano, a senior at Spanish River High School in Boca Raton. “If that filter doesn’t go with their aesthetic, or get enough likes, then they delete that part of their life like it didn’t ever happen.”
Same thing is happening on Tiktok as well.
Snapchat is one of the best app for chatting or exchanging their lives.
Some of people may remember Ruby Karp, well known blog writter wrote about how snapchat stories makes teens sad.
She says, "Snapchat is at the center of teens feeling left out. Snapchat is the main thing that triggers my teenage FOMO."
It oftens uses as a tool to bully others as well because of its ephemerality.
weBelong aims to be less toxic
weBelong cares about your mental health
On weBelong, users cannot see any number of followers others have, or likes others get. weBelong doesn't have any function that enables users to filter image or videos as well.
On weBelong, all you need is just being yourself. You don't have to pretend you are strong, you don't have to show off your life, you don't have to compare the number of likes you get, you don't care about number of followers as well.
weBelong cares about your privacy
Moreover, weBelong cares about your privacy as well. Even if your bullying friends try to see weBelong, your account has a function to set passcode that no one can see without entering 4 digits.
weBelong will be your safe space where you can share your thoughts, chat with your friends or make friends as well.
Social Networking evolved
It has bee around 20 years social media emerged, and the game inside social networking hasn't changed. Number matters, not a person. It made social networking apps toxic and people started to have mental health issues.
Through annual surveys from 2009 to 2019, researchers tracked the media use patterns and mental health of 500 teens as part of the Flourishing Families Project. They found that while social media use had little effect on boys' suicidality risk, for girls there was a tipping point. Girls who used social media for at least two to three hours per day at the beginning of the study--when they were about 13 years old--and then greatly increased their use over time were at a higher clinical risk for suicide as emerging adults.
"Something about that specific social media use pattern is particularly harmful for young girls," said BYU professor Sarah Coyne, the lead author of the study. She noted that girls' social tendencies likely make them more susceptible to the negative effects of social media.
Social networking apps should evolve, and weBelong will be the world first toxic free social networking app.