On Kids and Social Media

 The rapid spread of behavior, attitudes, or emotions through a social group – also known as social contagion – has been documented and debated for centuries. Today, the large volume of available digital content and the hyperspeed of its dissemination through powerful social media algorithms may be creating a new and powerful avenue for contagion. How might content on social media or in TV shows and movies impact symptoms of movement disorders, self-harm and even suicide? What should parents and caregivers know about viral social media challenges? What should a caregiver do if they are concerned their child may be susceptible to contagion behaviors from online content?


Registration is open for the #AskTheExperts webinar “Copycat: Social Contagion, Online Viral Behavior, and Youth” on Thursday, February 29 at 12pm ET on Zoom. A panel of psychiatrists, behavioral researchers, and public health experts will discuss the current research on associations between media content, youth behavior trends, and mental health outcomes, as well as share signs parents and caregivers should be aware of that may indicate vulnerability to negative effects from social contagion.

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