Hazel Lui, 15, PLK Ma Kam Ming College
Many parents think that social media is a waste of time, but they don’t really know how we use it. I, for instance, use it to talk to my friends every day.
I can use apps like Snapchat to check what my friends are doing, no matter where they are. We send each other photos on Snapchat until we get a “streak”. The fire emoji next to a friend’s name is special – it means we’re talking every day, which helps make our relationship stronger. Isn’t that a good thing?
Jade Mackinley Herndon, 17, Kwok Tak Seng Catholic Secondary School
My parents don’t know that I’ve made friends on social media. When I was younger, my mum and dad would tell me that the internet is a dangerous place, and that I shouldn’t talk to people I don’t know. But I did it anyway.
In real life, I have trouble making friends who have the same interests as me, and I don’t feel like I can talk about the things I really like. But thanks to social media, I can search for people who love the same things I do, and we can talk to each other. I feel happy when I talk to strangers, because they’ll respond in a positive way. In real life, people will mostly ignore me.
Vanessa Chan, 14, SKH Tsang Shiu Tim Secondary School
I read a lot of articles online, for example, those on the Young Post website. That’s not something I hide from my parents, but they don’t realise that you can use social media, too, to read news articles, and as a learning tool. I also have a private account to talk with my friends, or to express my thoughts.
My parents and I are from different generations, and the way they thought as teenagers is different from the way I think. That’s why, when I can’t tell them something, I’ll talk about it with my friends online.
Hui Hau-win, 15, PLK Wu Chung College
Lots of people use social media to talk about things that they’ve seen or heard. My parents probably think I’m doing the same thing, as well as posting photos or updating my status.
Sometimes I use social media to ask people for help with my schoolwork. For instance, when I come across a homework problem, I upload it to Instagram, where someone might try to help me solve it.
I also use Instagram to buy things. I bet my parents don't know that this is possible!
Talking points: should the government spend millions of dollars on the New Year’s Eve fireworks display
Jessie Siao, 14, SKH Lam Kau Mow Secondary School
I get really annoyed when my parents ask me about the things I’ve posted on Facebook or Instagram. They follow me on these sites, which means they can see my posts.
My parents want to know why I use social media when I am happy or sad. But I don’t think I owe them an explanation. That’s why I have private accounts. I use them to express my feelings when my parents have told me off, and I am happy when my friends sympathise with me. This is a good thing, as I value my privacy, but it’s also bad, because it means my parents know less about me, and we don’t talk as much any more. Will there be a time when we’ll stop talking to each other completely?
In our next Talking Points, we’ll discuss:
Should cage homes be illegal?
We are now accepting your answers for this topic. To take part, email your answer with your name, age, and school, along with a nice, clear selfie (make sure it’s not blurry), to firstname.lastname@example.org by lunchtime on Monday. Don’t forget to include “Talking Points” in the subject line.