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Tag: Social Media

Smartphones Having Negative Effect Upon Social Wellness, Experts Say

NEW YORK - The rise of smartphones and the subsequent embracing of social media has gone a long way to changing how we as a society communicate with one another, and those changes, while positive in many ways, also come with a equal number of negative factors that are having a detrimental effect on our collective social wellness, according to experts.

Experts have noted that this can be especially detrimental for college and university students, who should be taking advantage of being on a large and diverse campus by establishing relationships and learning from people from different walks of life. File photo: Pixabay.

Nowadays, people are communicating more than ever through social media apps such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and a whole host of others. While this is a great thing in terms of staying in touch with people that you might ordinarily not be able to, experts are saying that in many ways, smartphones and social media have resulted in people having less connection with one another than ever before in many ways.

Previously, people would get together and have meaningful conversations where tone of voice, body language, and spontaneous replies would provide a truly cohesive and connecting experience between two or more people. Fast-forward to today, and social media apps have reduced that act to mere surface-level conversing, greatly reducing the quality of conversation overall. Things like empathy and establishing a connection tend to fall by the wayside when you're merely typing in a quick sentence on social media, clicking submit, and then forgetting about it until you eventually receive a notification of a reply.

In fact, it's this style of communication that has created a rampant sense of narcissism among social media users, who primarily use the apps to inform people about themselves and their daily happenings as opposed to being concerned with the affairs of others. This factor has been described by experts as someone essentially shouting “look at me! Look at me!” over and over into a void. It’s this type of behavior that has proven that, while social media does have its distinct benefits, overall social wellness is being compromised and undermined as a result.

Experts have noted that this can be especially detrimental for college and university students, who should be taking advantage of being on a large and diverse campus by establishing relationships and learning from people from different walks of life. Instead, reports say, individuals note that social media use usually leads to fewer interactions and an overall less enriching experience. In addition, losing the face-to-face aspect of conversing with someone has been found to greatly reduce interpersonal skills that are vitally needed when a student graduates from college and goes on into the workforce, where they will have no choice then but to have to deal with people directly.

Of course, smartphones can even get in the way when you are engaging with someone face-to-face. Studies have shown that when lulls in the conversation occur, instead of finding something new to talk about or simply feeling comfortable enough with the company you're in to not mind an occasional bout of silence, many people will pull out their phones instead as a source of distraction or as an artificial means of engagement.

After all, in today's world of digital instant gratification – where information, videos, and entertainment are merely a button press away at all times – any dip in a conversation might make today's attention deficit disorder-afflicted population uncomfortable. However, people would benefit to leave the cell phones behind when meeting up with friends, and using any lull in the conversation to think, reflect, and then return to the conversation with intention and a renewed and different perspective, resulting in a stronger connection with the people you are with.

Reports also indicate that more and more people are feeling depressed and anxious nowadays, and a lot of experts attribute that to the rise and increase in cell phone use. Yes, you may have a lot of followers on Instagram and have a lot of back and forth, one-sentence conversations with these people, but ultimately, deep down, these people know that these are merely superficial relationships and at the end of the day, these relationships are not fueling ones innate desire to belong and have true connections. Putting the cell phone aside here and there and engaging in real world, face-to-face activity with others would not only strengthen the bonds between friends, but also enhance these relationships – and your own personal sense of self-worth – in a more meaningful way.

Smartphones and social media are here to stay, and when used within the correct context in one's life, they can certainly be informative and enriching experiences. However, as a society, we need to learn to be more selective regarding how and when we use them, and more importantly, when NOT to use them. After all, no experience on your cell phone is going to compare to having its real-life equivalent with somebody who you truly have a strong and distinct connection with, will it?

Targeted Advertising: The Future of Commerce, or Serious Invasion of Consumer Privacy?

NEW YORK - Years ago, a well-known story made its way around the news media regarding a father who's teenage daughter had been receiving mail ads for maternity clothing and nursery furniture from mega-retailer Target. 

In 2012, a widely circulated story surfaced about how mega-retailer Target figured out a teen girl was pregnant even before her father did. It turns out that, even in the early 2000s, national retail chains were using complex computer algorithms to determine products you may need based on previous purchases you have made. File photo: Pixabay.

It turns out that, even in the early 2000s, national retail chains were using complex computer algorithms to determine products you may need based on previous purchases you have made. Based on the purchases this gentleman's daughter had made, Target's computers had made an assumption – and a correct one – that she was indeed pregnant and even approximately estimated her due date. Based on that information, it automatically generated advertising mailers and sent them to her address.

On one hand, this demonstrates an incredible degree of sophistication when it comes to the technology in use; in fact, some people may actually enjoy the convenience that these so-called targeted ads may afford them. Many others, however, consider this a gross and horrific violation of privacy. Targeted ads often make use of any information you may give to any given company, in addition to often utilizing any readily available, public information that may be floating around as well; particularly information commonly found in any White Page directory, such as name, address, phone number, and more.

Also, bear in mind that the story above took place well over a decade ago. Obviously, technology has improved by leaps and bounds since then, so it's only natural to wonder just what information a company can glean from your past buying history now, and how they can tailor their advertising campaigns to take advantage of it. Again, some might prefer receiving advertising with a personal touch –  geared towards the types of purchases they've made in the past – but many people often find these ads a little too creepy. More often than not, consumers have been wondering “how the heck did they find THAT out about me?” upon receiving one of these unsolicited advertisements.

It's similar to how “cookies” behave- those files in your browser that keep track of your browsing history and in turn, can generate ads based on websites you've previously visited. It's all part of the targeted ad phenomenon, and nowadays the average person is practically bombarded with them on a daily basis. And it turns out that a vast majority of Americans – well over 60 percent – have said in online polls that they are not happy with having their behavior online tracked, analyzed, and essentially used against them for the sake of selling products.

Those involved in the poll that did not mind receiving targeted ads noted that they enjoyed seeing advertisements for things they were interested in, as opposed to random fluff that they would immediately tune out. In addition, those who minded targeted ads the least were young people up to the age of 29, who noted that it was a useful way to get information about goods and services they were interested in. However, a growing percentage of youth are also worried that they are spending too much time on their smartphones, a surprising statistic since everywhere you go, that's exactly what you see- young people with their faces glued on their phones constantly.

There's no doubt that the internet and smartphones have certainly brought a great deal of convenience into our lives, but unfortunately with that convenience comes a general loss of privacy. Consumers in today's digital age are giving up their anonymity, as well as their autonomy to act without being subtly and emotionally swayed by marketing experts wielding highly sophisticated computer software.

Reports also indicate that targeted advertising not only keeps track of what you have bought in the past, but can also actually figure out exactly what factors TRIGGER you to buy the things that you buy. It has led to advertising campaigns that may specifically attempt to exploit intense emotions – such as insecurity and depression – for the sole purpose of making a sale.

As for how to avoid being the target of targeted ads, that's actually a very difficult path to navigate. For everything we do know about how advertisers acquire, analyze, and use your personal data, there's more than likely just as much – if not more – that we don't know about it. Corporate advertising is a very secretive game, so the best you can do is simply try to use your common sense when navigating websites and social media, and try not to put anything there that you wouldn't want a total stranger to know. Otherwise, it's possible this just may have to be an accepted aspect of life in the digital age going forward; that is, unless you just take your computer and smartphone and throw them both right in the dumpster. But ultimately, it simply involves making your own decisions, despite whatever may pop up in your mailbox or in your social media feed.

Radaris Reveals Continuous Innovations to Data Access Tools

The integration of personal, professional and property data improves public awareness and accountability

BOSTON - Radaris, the public records search engine, today announces a host of product improvements, data access innovations and data source updates that have been added in recent weeks. The improvements include the option to append specific relatives to background checks; tighter integration of phone, property and professional records; and the addition of asset value assessments to premium reports.


Known for both its comprehensive information from local, state and federal sources and its ease of use, Radaris has quietly been making many changes to improve access to public data. These innovations to the Radaris suite of data access tools make it easier for users to research and understand the history of any person or business they encounter.


The product improvements include the option to append the details of a specific relative to a purchased background report without added cost, expanding the possibilities for discovery and understanding of any subject. Also completed recently is the addition of asset value assessments made possible through a technical innovation that creates a greater integration of our data universe.


The result is that information previously available only through separate reports is now more consistently connected and referenced in all of the reports available. This information can include; full names, aliases, age, date of birth, property ownership and rental records, current address, bankruptcies, phone numbers, liens, email addresses, civil judgments, court records of driving citations, speeding tickets, felonies, misdemeanors, neighbor's names, relative's names and addresses, marriage and divorce records when available.


Together, these innovations and improvements serve the pillars of the Radaris public records business including; background checks on people, company research under the business directory brand, property record reports, and phone number owner discovery through its reverse phone lookup.


Radaris is the leader in integrating public records data sets and making them available for the consumer market because of a belief that access to information is a vital asset to an open society.


As always, Radaris strives to provide the best data in the market. If users are not able to find the information they need, our customer service team will personally help them find the best available report.


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About Radaris
Radaris ( is a public record search engine. provides comprehensive profiles of every person in the country that combine public records with social media and other online mentions along with premium background check reports, contact information reports and other information tools.


Contact: Radaris America, Inc.
Press Relations
press (at) radaris (dot) com

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