New Club Promotes the Positive and Safe Use of Social Media


Eliza Rorech, Contributing Writer

The Students Advocating Change In Media Club (S.A.C.I.M) created a survey, gathering answers from the student body at Poly, in order to examine the effects that social media has on the community. After receiving 183 responses, we found that 26 percent of students spend 6+ hours on social media a day, 56.7 percent of students compare themselves to people/images they view on social media, and 48.1 percent of students think that body image issues are the most harmful effects of social media. 

 Back in September, I founded S.A.C.I.M with Lucy Goldberg ’26 to educate, inspire, and affect change in social media by promoting the development of safe, positive, mind and body well-being communities that foster growth for all.

 Social media has always been a part of my life. I’ve had experiences with social media where it felt like a fun, innocent thing to do or simply using it as an outlet to decompress. As I got older though, the rose colored glasses came off and I started experiencing the ways in which social media can be harmful – things that I wasn’t ever warned about. 

At the end of sixth grade, I downloaded TikTok, which was and still is very popular. I was reluctant to get it, but I wanted to fit in with the rest of my friends and engage in conversations with them about the app. I began to use it as a pastime, and it quickly became my main source of entertainment. I would spend hours simply watching short videos that I didn’t gain anything from. This was until I felt the videos begin to lower my self-confidence. After this experience, I made the decision to delete the app. I haven’t had it for about three years now and I think that it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made for myself and my mental health. I’m not saying that everyone should delete TikTok and simply kill the presence of social media in their lives. However, I think that if something is causing such discontent in your life like this, a short term or long term absence of that may be beneficial.  

Every time an adult has ever talked to me about social media, it has been a dull speech about cyberbullying. In my experience, this has never proved itself effective or helpful. These discussions about social media are coming from people who were not teenagers using social media themselves, and I believe to understand the harms best you need to  experience them for yourself. 

Rather than preaching about cyberbullying and how to avoid such things that come along with social media, S.A.C.I.M  wants to discuss means of coping with these harmful effects on mental health because they are inevitable. Considering this, we still strive to point out the positives of social media and the ways in which we can use these apps to our personal advantage. Something that was also important was to avoid coming off as anti-social media. Do we think there are negative effects? Yes. But do we believe that social media as a whole is inherently bad? No. 

The students behind S.A.C.I.M. are aiming to do more with our club, including extending our influence outside of school. This is all thanks to our determined and generous advisor, Anais Kingsberry. If you are interested in joining, find us in room 122 during the second half of clubs period.