The Instigator
Fhqwhgads
Con (against)
Losing
17 Points
The Contender
Justinisthecrazy
Pro (for)
Winning
18 Points

Resolved: On balance, social networking websites have a positive impact on the United States.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/28/2009 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 13,630 times Debate No: 7596
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
Votes (7)

 

Fhqwhgads

Con

[Before my case is presented, I would like to set the grounds for debate. First round is a reading of cases. The next round is rebuttal and reconstruction, and round 3 is a summary of the case, along with major voting issues, should any be decided by either party.

Nearly 110 million unique users log on to social networking sites on a monthly basis, and while there can be many benefits to using these sites, more harm comes from them than good. The resolution states: That, on balance, social networking sites have a positive impact on the United States. Because the negative has the first argument in the round it is the negative's burden to provide necessary definitions for the round, although the only necessary term that needs defining would be the phrase "on balance" which the negative chooses to define as "all things considered and weighed equally". This definition was comprised of multiple sources' definitions to provide a clearer definition for the reader. When we weigh and consider all of the pros and cons of social networking, we can see that the cons outweigh the pros, therefore, social networking cannot have a positive impact on the United States.

C1. [Social networking sites hurt employment by becoming a haunting reflection of a teenager's past that can deter employers from getting a job in later life.] Employment is the first major reason that social networking cannot have a positive impact. While it can be good for employers to check web profiles of possible employees before hiring them, it can backfire as well. Anders Albrechtslund, in his article "Online Social Networking as Participatory Surveillance," quotes Ivan Tribble as saying that "When youngsters lead a life in mediated publics, the fear is that their adolescent thoughts, musings and immature actions might become a millstone around their neck, since the information will be embarrassingly accessible later on. One such speculation has to do with getting a job in adult life." Albrechtslund then himself states that Tribble "is convinced that past online social networking will be damaging to an applicant's chances for employment." Qualified workers may be turned down because of their personal life, which should be separate from their business life. An example of this is when a 21 year-old major in public relations at Baylor University had her name surface on a social networking site called JuicyCampus and was called the "biggest slut on campus." She said she was trying "to get a job in business," and the last thing she wanted was "maliciousness and lies" about her all over the Internet.

C2. [Social networking sites are nearly impossible to regulate or control by outside sources, and current moderation is inadequate.] Another reason that social networking is a problem stems from the fact that we cannot regulate it or control it, seeing as it is an ever-evolving media. Jeanne Brooks-Gunn and Elisabeth Hirschhorn Donahue conclude in their article "Introducing the Issue" that "government rulemaking that regulates some, but not all, types of media" makes it "difficult to enact laws...that keep pace with rapidly changing technology, much of which is outside the purview of government control... and as technological convergence becomes the norm, regulating a specific media form, such as requiring V-chips in televisions, becomes somewhat meaningless." There is also little legal consequence for social networking sites' content. The aforementioned JuicyCampus that nearly ruined a college student's chance for a job, is completely legal. Richard Morgan says in his article "A Crash Course in Online Gossip" that it is "immune, no matter what it runs on its site from users, just like AOL is not responsible for ...content in their chat rooms.... JuicyCampus is not encouraging people to be themselves, it's encouraging them to be the worst version of themselves." And since these sites are protected by the Communications Decency Act of 1996, they are also immune to bigotry, hatred and other insulting comments. Therefore we have no one to blame but the owners of the social networking companies alone for not keeping a firmer grip on the actions of its members.

C3. [Social networking sites' amount of harassment and bullying can drive teens to depression and suicide, and human lives are being morally valued under online lives.] While social networking can be a problem for the older crowd and employment, it becomes an even bigger problem because of harassment and bullying on these social networking sites. THe complete openness and legality of these sites makes it easy for harassing messages and cyberbullying to occur without recourse. Kaveri Subrahmanyam and Patricia Greenfield did a study in 2005 showing 9 percent of young Internet users reporting being harassed online in the previous year. Since then, with the coming of more sites, advancing technology, and more ways to bully online, that number jumped dramatically to 43 percent in the next year, in a study done by Harris Interactive. While this often brings feelings of anger and depression in teens, sometimes this harassment drives teens to suicide, such as in the case of Megan Meier, who was reportedly being harassed via the social networking site Myspace. The next day, she had hung herself in her own bedroom. Now while those who support social networking say that we are allowing kids to communicate, and also adding to the economy through supporting these social networking companies, they are ignoring the most important aspect of all: the value of a human life. We cannot put a list of internet friends or the growth of a company or the popularity of a person ofer a human life. Recently in Wales, according to Switched.com, 17 suicides in a single networking were linked to social networking sites alone. Things like this are happening worldwide and we cannot let it happen here again (such as in Megan Meier's case) by promoting social networking anymore.

When we see that social networking causes problems not only when we put a person's personal lives over their business lives, but when we put their online lives over their human lives. The cons of situations like these outweigh the pros dramatically, and that is why I urge a negative ballot.
Justinisthecrazy

Pro

Neilson/Netratings has issued a study showing that the top 10 social networking sites saw traffic growth of 47% and over the last year. Myspace has seen the biggest growth 367% more users. Social networking sites are becoming a way of life as the number of individuals logging on to these sites grow each year. Social networking sites contribute to the economy and education. Therefore I stand (www.socialsoftware.webblogsinc.com/2006/05/17top-10-social-networking-sites-see-47-growth/)
Resolved: Social networking sites on balance have a positive effect on the United States

For this debate I clarify the following defintions on balance as net result or overall effect (www.investorwords.com/3410/on_balance.html)

positive to be admitting of no doubt or irrefutable fact (American Heritage second College edition)

1.Rape, Suicide, and identity theft can be avoided

The negative aspects of social networking sites can be easily prevented as well as avoided. The site has resources on it. One example of these resources is blocking your site from the public, ensuring that only your friends can see your see your personal information and pictures. You can also only talk to people you actually know, thus preventing people who do not know you from talking to you. You should only post pictures that do not show your neighborhood and where you live. You shouldn't give any personal information out on these sites such as your address, phone number, email addresses, or other information that can lead to you getting into a bad situation. "It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities." Josiah Charles Stamp once said. With social networking sites people need to be responsible if you're choosing not to be safe then you need to accept the consequences of your actions. If you still think that these sites are bad news then you can choose not to go on them.

2.The use of YouTube and social networking websites has now moved into the realm of educational development

Social networking sites can be used in an educational sense. Now online there aren't just teens, these sites have expanded, many colleges are opening up and posting lectures on YouTube and campus life videos. Berkley has posted videos with lectures, tours of campuses, and athletic events. The population on YouTube is increasing and many more institutions are using YouTube for a health outreach. Women's health today and lectures from Mini Medical School and Osher Lifelong Learning Institution, which are popular in today's culture. Women's health Today videos have more than 300,000 views. This is an increase in the reach of this unique and valuable programs said Burstan. (March 2008, Positive Presence on YouTube.

3.People are gaining political knowledge by going on candidate's social networking sites. (Msnbc.com and Foxnews.com)
"As the country's most trafficked Website, Myspace will play a power role in the upcoming election. Our digital candidate banners will be the yard signs of the 21st Century and our political viral videos and vlogs are the campaign ads of the future, By empowering our users with easy-to-find information, offered in a way they can relate to it, Impact will ignite their involvement in the political process." Said Chris DeWolfe, Ceo of Myspace. Myspace has influence people all over the world with the 10million plus accounts. Former Presidential candidate Senator Hilary Clinton has a myspace page with 52,000 friends, while Barrack Obama has 100,000 friends. Ron Paul, Joe Biden, John McCain, Mitt Romney, John Edwards, and many other political candidates have my spaces to influence voters. This allows people to get more involved in the political process and activities. This is good for the country because it increases the voter turn out. In many states they had record number of new younger voters that turned and about 77% of people who had a MySpace voted because they were influenced by this candidates' sites on Myspace. (Study done by Fox news late November) Showing that the social networking sites have an influence on the younger generation of America. According to com Scores report (2006) 68% of Myspace users are 25 and older. The average age of a myspace user is 35. Most myspace users are 35-54 and are accounted for 41% of Myspaces users. Teens Only account for 12% of the audience. (mashable.com)

4.Social networking helps the economy
Almost all social networking websites are usually run as a business. The person or people who started the site are hoping to make money, usually through advertising. They enable the economy as any business does, through the transfer of money form one person to the other. The consumer may not have been able to meet the product in the real world and we are seeing more products making it into the market place from ads on social networking sites. Social networking sites give a new place for people to advertise and inform people about their product. Companies are asking, 'How can we make our workforce more productive?' " says Kevin Martin, an analyst at market researcher Aberdeen Group.
Corporations increasingly are "exploring and experimenting" in the use of social networks to improve business operations, says Gina Bianchini,CEO of Ning, a social-networking site for businesses and consumers. It makes revenue from Google AdSense and premium services.
"There's been a definite shift the last two months," she says. "There is a genuine interest now rather than a casual curiosity before."
I'm not talking about just sticking an ad on the site, but people are creating a page on the networking site so they can tell people about their product or services. These people can then connect to the product if they want more info and become "friends" or fans on the page.

Conclusion
On balance social networking sites have a positive effect on The United States due to education, the economy, and voting.
Debate Round No. 1
Fhqwhgads

Con

[I will start by attacking my opponent's case, then moving on to rebuild my case.]

The first argument I make on my opponent's case is that "on balance" has already been defined in the round, the definition I present comes from as many sources as possible to provide a clearer definition for the debate therefore you disregard his definition of "on balance" and look to mine and through mine you see that my cons on my side of the case will outweigh his pros in the end. Also, he provides a confusing definition of positive in the context used the resolution as the positive referred to has nothing to do with irrefutable fact, positive is better defined in the round as "good," if you look to my opponent's definition of positive you are voting on the basis of an incorrect resolution.

On his Contention 1 he states that private accounts can be made on these social networking sites, but private accounts are incredibly easy to hack; this has happened before to a number of people. Also, teens can be gulled easily by people pretending to be their age online; if one of their real-life friends has an online friend posing as a person their age they are more likely to try to be friends with the second person because their real-life friend is friends with them, therefore pulling them into a false sense of security where a sex offender or murderer could be hiding behind an account disguised as an innocent teenager.

His second through fourth contentions deal with education, politics, and economic gain, but after I block his C1, you must apply my C3 that his C1 failed to block where we must value a human life above all things in the round because a person's intrinsic worth is greater than that of any earthly idea such as education, politics, and the economy. It is morally more correct to value a human life because our nation was founded on morals and losing our morals destroys the foundation of the US therefore not having a positive impact on the affirmative side whatsoever, and the affirmative does not value this at all; I therefore have the higher moral value in this round which should be the basis of your vote here. It is currently pointless to make any new arguments against C2-4 individually because, like I said, I am upholding the greater moral value on my side: human life, so you cannot consider them drops, you basically cross-apply my C3 on all of them. While the aff may argue that his plans are better for the US because they are valuable to the US, nothing can be better for the US than keeping our population alive; we were a country founded on morals, if we drop these morals we lose our essence and foundation as a nation.

This is why you must look to the negative in this debate. Glad to see it's going to be a good one. (To my opponent, are you a debater? If so, LD or CX? I remember having to write this case for a public forum debate.)
Justinisthecrazy

Pro

My opponent says we must go with his/her definition because he got it from "multiple sources" I quote my source as www.investordwords.com/3410/onbalance.html Therefore we must go with my definition of one balance whihc is the overall effect or net result.

The definition of positive must also go to me because I have used the American heritage Second college edition
once again that definition was to be admitting of no doubt or irrefutable fact

So, with my definitions the resolution reads

Resolved: that with all things considered social networking sites have had irrefutable factual impacts on the United States.

We must first look to see that my opponent has dropped my Contention 4 about the economy and therefore that must be flowed across or put into the affirmative section of the debate. As shown in previous evidence there is no doubt that it has been having a positive effect on these companies and increasing revenues as market researcher Kevin Martin and Gina Bianchini Ceo of Ning.

He did not attack my contention 3 on voting. It is proven that more people have come out and are voting as shown in the recent election and through my prior evidence we must fall back onto that.

He attacked my contention 2 on Education but

I will now attack his case
In his contention 3 he attacks the teen population on myspace and these social networking sites. Well 17 suicides out of how many million users, I believe it has reached the billions now. Also, If they are comiting suicides because fo these social networking sites, then their is a deeper problem within that individual and the social networking site cannot be held accountable. He likes to attack the teen audience and only the teen audience but the teen audience only accounts for 12% of the population on this sites (mashable.com). The fact that these are avoidable if people would use privacy settings. It is not the social networking sites fault if you are to naive or stupid to realize that you are threatening your security.

I attack this point completely with my Contention one. With social networking sites if your choosing not to be safe then you need to accept the consequences of your actions. It is much like having sex without a condemn hoping not to get pregnant and then when you do get pregnant you can't understand why. Doesn't make much sense does it? But you don't blame the condemns or birth control or safety precautions you never took, because it is your fault. The same applies to this social networking sites. The resources to be safe and protect yourself are there if you are to irresponsible or naive to use them then you should not be on the site.

His contention 1 talks about tabloids online basically. Well, it is true these sites are real and are possibly doing harm, at the same time no one complains about the National Inquirer making up lies about celebrities all the time. How, is this any different?

You talk about moraling life. Well my case is moraling life just as well. Education allows you to live a better life. A economy doing well allows you to live a better life. Getting information on political figures and what you're voting for enables you to have better control over what life can and will be like for you in the future. Also, I would like to mention that all the suicides are not the social networking sites fault because there has to be a deeper problem within an individual to cause them to take their own life.

Vote for the affirmative because social networking sites help the education field. economy. the political process of voting, and privacy features allowing things to be avoided.

side note I debate LD and Public Forum depending on which topic I like better for the months
Debate Round No. 2
Fhqwhgads

Con

[Final arguments and major voting issues.]

1. The Pro contradicts himself by saying that he uses his def. of on balance, but later refers to mine in the defined resolution. I count this as a concession to my def.

2. The Pro provides a very confusing definition of positive which makes the Res very hard to debate. "irrefutable factual impacts?" If I can't refute them, then what is the point of debating? Positive should not even warrant a provided definition because it is so simply understood in its context in the resolution as "good."

3. It's 17 suicides in one NEIGHBORHOOD. Sure, there's millions of users, but many of these stories happen under the radar, and this one happened to be caught because of its magnitude.

4. My opponent must misunderstand my C1. Tabloids purposely expose celebrities, whose personal live are always under a magnifying glass. We as common people should not come under so much scrutiny because often we forget about our childish ways in the past, then they come back to haunt us. However it is worse for the common person, since we do not have the luxuries celebrities do to fall back on. Something as minimal as a picture we took when we were immature and have grown out of the stage should not cost us a chance at something as important as a job.

5. My case is not "moraling" life, it is valuing human life and dignity OVER the very things you mention. It's not about living a better life, it's simply living. Sure, political figures are great and all, but when we're ignoring the fact that there are predators and murderers lurking these sites every day, and elections happen every 4 years, you look to the sanctity of life first, which I uphold.

6. Privacy, privacy, privacy. Hackers are everywhere and they know how to bypass privacy blocks. A Google search can probably turn up a few, unless it's all been redacted by Internet Cops or something.

7. Teens may only account for 12% of social networking figures, but keep in mind that that 12% are probably the only ones using their real age. Anyone can be anyone on the internet. Effective disguises are nigh impossible to see through. Ever wonder why Myspace predators are so good at fooling gullible teen users?

8. Megan Meier was reported as being a cheerful teenager (I used this source ages ago, and had to clear my damn history, but it was a news site. I have no reason to lie.) before she became depressed after interaction with people she knew posing as someone who eventually said "The world would be better off without you" leading to her suicide. The aff will say "Well, you can't hold the sites responsible for what people say." But I can hold them responsible for not having a large team of moderators to at least police what people say. You may not catch them all, but you can reduce the amount.

F. We are a country founded on morals. Among these morals are the belief that life is sacred. By choosing social networking, you allow more atrocities to happen, we lose more lives, and our morals are marred.

[By the way, I don't debate formally--yet. I'm using this to get practice in. Where could I do better, seeing as you're a debater?]
Justinisthecrazy

Pro

Ok, I will concede the definition of on-balance and go with yours. I agree that it means with all things considered and equally weighed.

However, I once again offer up my definition of positive being to be admitting of no doubt or irrefutable fact (American Heritage second College edition)

I offer a source for my definition, my opponent does not therefore we must go with my definition.

in his point 3 of his rebuttal I would just like to say, perhaps there is something wrong with that area, perhaps there is a depressed state of being, a poor culture there, I do not know. However, I do know that social networking sites may have contributed but have not been the SOLE cause of these suicides because suicide comes from a state of prolonged depression and there is counseling for this and perhaps these kids/teens you speak of needed it.

Also in response in to his point 4 in the rebuttal. he says Tabloids expose celebrities and that we as common people must not. Well, I am sorry but I thought this was America, We are all entitled to same rights and if the celebrities rights are violated as you claim than ours as common people are allowed to be. National Inquirer does a good job of doing both.

his point 7 um ok you use a statistic without a source I'm pretty sure that's not legitimate at all. I use a statistic with a source. The teen audience only accounts for 12% of the population on this sites (mashable.com)

His point 8 he has no source again and so it must be striken from the vote.

Point 6 he has no source for hackers. Where as it is a known fact that you can set privacy settings and prevent yourself from giving out personal information. . With social networking sites people need to be responsible if you're choosing not to be safe then you need to accept the consequences of your actions. Or perhaps if they are just to unwise to be safe than they should not be using them in general.

He drops my economy still and therefore it must be flowed across.

He dropped my extension on Democracy/voting/political process whatever you wish to call it so it must be flowed across.

His point 5 is something of moraling life and dignity over the things I mention.

He states elections happen every four years, this is true. And if this is well true than wouldn't you want more information available to you about the candidate? So you can hopefully get a better feel of life for the next four years? Well You get this via the social networking site. I will fall back on my sources fox news and msnbc.com

So, I urge an affirmative ballot based on the economy, political process, and ability to prevent things outweigh the negatives the con presents through suicides and online tabloids of peoples life.

In conclusion vote affirmative on the resolution
*note it is with the definitions i provided which had a source and must be flowed across*

Resolved: that with all things considered social networking sites have had irrefutable factual impacts on the United States.

Thank you
Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by Justinisthecrazy 7 years ago
Justinisthecrazy
really I went 5-0 at the tourny with this I debated con 3 times and aff 2 times and in finals we debated neg and won but that is becuase my neg is killer :) and of course in public forum DEFINITIONS OWN THE DEBATE usually
Posted by Fhqwhgads 7 years ago
Fhqwhgads
I ran this with a partner at a tournament before and went 5-0, but that was due to two things:
1.) 4 of the teams ran the SAME CASE. We ended up having arguments prepared for every one of them.
2.) In finals, the other team was abusive and were voted down due to PF being a lax form of debate.

Good debate. I still disagree with the positive definition though, because it still sounds weird to me. Then again, nobody at that tourney ran that def.
Posted by dragonfire1414 7 years ago
dragonfire1414
I debated this topic before.... and quite coincidentally, pro won nearly every time. As far as i know, only a minimal amount of people killed themselves because of social networking sites.
Posted by sorc 7 years ago
sorc
I voted Pro. I didn't like either sides contentions/rebuttals for the most part, but Pro less so.
Posted by grayron 7 years ago
grayron
I like to say that I think this is considered a social networking site.
Posted by Justinisthecrazy 7 years ago
Justinisthecrazy
ya but also lets keep evidence/sources out of the comments but k I didnt catch it anyways lol
Posted by Fhqwhgads 7 years ago
Fhqwhgads
Also, in my R1 Negative case, it should read "In Wales, according to Switched.com, 17 suicides in one NEIGHBORHOOD were linked to social networking alone."

Networking was a typo in that sentence (thinking about networking at the time :P) therefore it cannot be used as evidence in the debate against my case (though I don't see how you could do that, I just like to be on the safe side).
Posted by Justinisthecrazy 7 years ago
Justinisthecrazy
One must argue both sides so whatever im in
Posted by Justinisthecrazy 7 years ago
Justinisthecrazy
Wow, interesting case, I kinda want to take this but seeing as I have my other one where I am con currently open atm I cannot
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