They Haven’t Responded to Me Yet

Reasons why people want immediate feedback from others.


Christina English

People want immediate feedback from others on social media, but why?

Instagram. Snapchat. TikTok. BeReal. These are only a few of the different types of social media platforms that the students use daily. These, and many other platforms, have been created in the last decade to provide people a place to post about their lives and to connect with others.

While there might be some positive effects regarding social media, there are also quite a few negative effects that, at this point, are fairly widely known. Some of these effects regard mental health, consumerism, and hypersensivity, and they all relate back to the idea of people wanting immediate responses and feedback from others.

Most know by now after interacting with social media over the past couple of decades that constantly being online does not positively affect mental health. It can lead to depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and many other harmful mindsets such as self-esteem issues.

Rachel Ehmke of explains how teenagers try to improve their self-esteem by using social media and how it only makes them feel worse. Ehmke also says that social media can “make talking in person feel more intimidating.” People, especially teenagers, see what others are posting online and want their lives to be like theirs, sometimes right away. They want an immediate change  in their lives, and this can sometimes affect people’s mental health negatively.

Social media companies design their apps for people to consume their content daily. In the last five years or so, different social media companies have been able to find different ways to keep people consuming more and more content at a rapid pace. Other companies have not figured this out and are slowly becoming irrelevant as time goes on. The three social media apps that have been able to figure out this fast pace algorithm are TikTok, Instagram, and BeReal.

At the moment, TikTok is the most notorious of the three for its addictive properties. From 2017, it has grown rapidly to the point where people can make money off of the 15-30 second videos that they post. According to Megan McCoy and Lindsay Gould of, “TikTok is actively crippling [people’s] attention span, concentration, and even short-term memory.” This corruption that TikTok is creating in peoples’ heads is also causing them to want immediate interaction with others. If it’s causing people to have shorter attention spans and short-term memory, then people are going to want to know about certain things and get responses from people right away before they become impatient or forget about it completely.

Not only does social media cause peoples’ patience and memory to thin, it also can cause some people to become hypersensitive to others criticism. Criticism can bring the idea of people wanting a certain response that caters to them. If they do not get this response, they do not take it well and become defensive of what has been said.

“Social media platforms provide adolescents with unprecedented opportunities for social interactions during a critical developmental period where the brain is especially sensitive to social feedback,” said Dr. Eva Telzer, assistant professor in developmental psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Telzer conducted a study on tweens and teenagers regarding how long they are on social media, where they found out that 78% of 13-17-year-olds check social media hourly. Telzer then concluded that social media is connected to kids’ neural development regarding criticism. If this problem with children’s neural development continues, they will not be able to handle the immediate feedback they do not want to hear and continue to seek out the positive responses that they desire.

Because of mental health, consumerism, and hypersensitivity, people always want immediate feedback from the people around them and the people online. Wanting to hear back from people is not truly wrong, but it should not be taken to the point of irrationality. If people are feeling restless about immediate feedback, they should put their phone down, relax, and enjoy what the real world has to offer them right now.