BookLife Talks with Shani Major
A sponsored Q&A with the author of Meme Is the New MeanMajor’s Meme Is the New Mean: Bullying Behind the Screen is a caring and useful account of the potentially harmful effects of social media, especially on young people. We talked to her about why it’s more important than ever to be conscious of our online lives.
How did you become concerned about the effects of social media?
Social media lost its fun factor for me. This led me to reflect on the impact social media would have on my daughters' adolescent experiences and those of generations to come.
What are some of the harmful effects you discuss in the book?
The book is particularly relevant as incidents of cyberbullying and suicides linked to cyberbullying are on the rise. I think readers will connect to the behaviors and experiences described in the book, such as shame sharing, displaying digital courage, and seeking external validation. I use evidence-based research to illustrate the potential effects of misusing social media, and I believe this book can benefit the lives of many. I hope to reach anyone who uses social media, specifically adolescents and young adults. Social media affects their development, identities, and peer interactions both on and offline.
Do you feel like social media is the cause of cyberbullying?
My book provides a unique perspective on the issue of cyberbullying, as I am both a parent and an elementary educator. The book does not identify social media as the root of cyberbullying; rather, it points to mindsets and behaviors that create a socially irresponsible and unhealthy environment online.
Learn more about Meme Is the New Mean: Bullying Behind the Screen.