Social media has grown tremendously the last years and opened a whole new world of communication. In only one century, people have moved from letters and telegraphs to mobile phones and social media.

The number of social media users worldwide today is 3.2 billion, and four in five Norwegians use social media . Communication today is both faster and easier than before.

In just a second, a message can be sent to the other side of the world. People do not read newspapers and magazines as they did years ago, but this does not mean that their communication is better.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of online and offline communications? And what opportunities and challenges are associated with modern technology and social media?

Many social media users have probably been told that they are paying more attention to the device they are holding than the person they are conversing with.

Thirdly, social media brings stress and lacks privacy. Everyone seems so happy on social media, but it isn't the truth.

Teenagers are exposed to certain beauty standards and have a need to fit in and be popular, which leads to social stress, eating disorders and depression.

It is a matter of course to belong to a network like Instagram, otherwise you officially “don’t exist”. This can cause cyber bullying and mental health issues.

On social media, people are socially isolated which makes it easy for bullies to denigrate people in the virtual world, even if they don’t have the audacity to do it in the real world.

A quarter of teens suffered online abuse in 2015 . Another disadvantage is that private information/data privacy can easily be stolen and misused.

Facebook´s troubles continue to grow after it was recognized that they exposed information from 87 million users to Cambridge Analytica in 2016 .

In conclusion, social media has been blamed for promoting, among other disadvantages, social ills and health issues .

Nevertheless, social media brings many advantages, such as connecting the world.

Contemporary society is so caught up in social media and communicating offline that its people are losing their social abilities needed to communicate face to face.