AO3: How have the writers of both texts conveyed their message about the negative use of social networking sites? Support your answer using brief quotations from the texts. By Ali Ul Quder 10-F

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Passage A is extracted from, ‘It’s So Over: Cool Cyber Kids Abandon Social Networking Sites’. Passage B has been given the title of ‘Social Websites Harm Children’s Brains.’ Both passages have different sources. Passage A is written by The ‘The Guardian’ while passage B is written by ‘Mail Online’. The sources of both passages argue upon the same idea and in general, both sources have successfully conveyed their message and have also managed to persuade the audience about the harmful effects of social networking sites.

Moving on, the theme of both passages can somewhat be linked with one another. The theme of passage A is ‘Adults using networking sites’ which shows the reader that adults have adopted the trend of using networking sites. While the theme of passage B is ‘social websites ruining children’s mind’. Both themes share similar meanings as both passages talk about either technology or social media ruining the consumer’s life and deteriorating their lives. Overall, it also shows the reader that most people do have their head tilted downwards, gazing at the bright screens instead of being productive.

The tone of passage A is informal and casual. Words like ‘rara skirts’ and “uncles wearing skinny jeans” add a bit of humor to the passage. This proves to the reader that causality is present. This intimidating language immediately creates an impact on the reader and helps the author to present his opinion. While on the other hand, passage B is formal and not as harsh as passage A as the author uses words like ‘websites are causing alarming changes’. This is effectful as the author directly gets to his point. The intended effect of passage A is comparatively more persuading and engaging even though informal vocabulary is used but passage B is also persuading as the author is straightforward.

The purpose of passage A is to inform the reader that the younger generations have stopped using social networking sites as there is a prominent transition of usage between young adults and adults. ‘Their love of being online’ this shows us, the audience, that there is no sign of people logging out and stop using their devices. The purpose of passage B is also to inform the reader that social media has a dreadful effect on people’s minds, and has successfully convinced the reader by stating, ‘Sites such as Facebook, Twitter are said to shorten attention spans’. This shows the reader that this eventually results in a deluded state of mind. Overall, the purpose of both passages is similar, to aware the audience of the abuses of technology.

Furthermore, the use of statistics is also present in both, passage A and B. Passage A uses ‘25-34 years old’ whereas B uses ‘over 150 million’. This helps the author to prove his as he uses evidence and does not state his opinion in a general and vague manner. The use of statistics plays with the reader’s mind as they are convinced.

Also, using jargon is present in both of the passages. The use of words in passage A such as ‘Facebook’ and ‘Facebook, Twitter and Bebo’ in passage B signifies to the reader that the authors are proving their statement and conveying their ideas using examples.

Moreover, logos are also present in both passages. This can be proved by the words ‘15-24 year olds’ In passage A and ‘millions whose social lives’ in passage B. This shows the audience that the author does have the knowledge and does not struggle to create a logical appeal and creates ease to persuade the reader. It adds professionalism.

Lastly, the use of figures of speech is also vastly present in both of the passages. Passage A uses humor to entertain the reader like, ‘mothers investing in ra-ra skirts’ and ‘uncles wearing skinny jeans’. This shows the reader that social networking sites have kept the older generations updated. This also entertains the reader and develops interest as the passage is not mechanical. Whereas, in passage B phrases like, ‘buzzing of phones’ has been used which is an onomatopoeia. This also entertains the reader as they get a clearer idea of the scenario. The effect of this is that both sources/authors try their best to persuade the reader by entertaining them.

Summing it all up, both authors successfully convey their main message. The main message is that technology, in general, has ruined our lives mentally and physically. The writers also successfully persuade the audience by using FOS which entertains the reader and makes them greedy for more. Another effect used by the author is of statistics which proves to the reader the author’s point and makes them believable. Lastly, the use of jargon also plays a major role in persuading the reader as they provide evidence to the author and makes their statement believable.

About froebelianwriters

I am an English Language teacher teaching O'Levels Edexcel and CIE A Levels at Froebel's International School, Islamabad. I am also working as a Subject Specialist Literacy consultant for the same school. Writing and reading has always been a passion and I try my utmost to instill these habits and hobbies in my students as well. I can be reached/contacted at fabbas227@hotmail.com or 03365287335 Happy reading!

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