Browse recent news stories from the University of Michigan, as well as from respected outlets around the nation, about the most popular social media platforms, tools and trends.

Social Integrity and Responsibility in 2022

As billions of people around the world continue to use social media every day, and as those numbers continue to grow each year, the way social media works and the way those platforms are used continues to evolve. From in-depth examinations of the infrastructure of disinformation to Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter, 2022 turned out to be another fascinating year in which social media played a critical role in crisis, crucial conversations, and community engagement.

Are there ways to prevent misinformation while still supporting freedom of speech? Should content be filtered, and if so, by whom? How dangerous is cyberbullying? How do we give children the ability to connect with others through these spaces while maintaining digital wellness? And where does the responsibility lie: with the platforms or with the users?

Throughout the past year, experts from across the University of Michigan have answered these questions, addressed concerns, and offered insight into what this all means for the current age of social media.

Algorithms and the Spread of Misinformation

Misinformation and disinformation can span multiple platforms, applications, and forums, creating an infrastructure that presents evidence of theories that they think is informational. This can lead to expanded networks that contribute to continuous growth of the disinformation infrastructure. Moderation by platforms while maintaining the freedom of expression they promote is a major challenge. Can social media algorithms help to establish healthier digital environments while still providing opportunities for open dialogue? U-M experts weighed in throughout the year:

Navigating Platforms as a Social Media User

Navigating social media platforms can be tumultuous on the best days, but especially when there is an international crisis. The reliability of content being distributed and the varying thresholds on social media platforms can make it difficult to participate in positive public communication. Where does the responsibility lie when it comes to having functional conversations online? Can information on social media platforms be trusted? Do social media users find meaning in the experiences that others share? Hear what the experts said this year:

Harassment and Cyberbullying

It’s no secret that harassment, cyberbullying, and trolling occur in social media spaces and present one of the most dangerous aspects of the platforms. Who is most at risk? How is a cyberbully identified? What can social media sites do to create safer environments? Researchers provide their insights: 

Twitter Ownership Changeover

One of the largest social media news stories of the year was Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter and the changes that have been made since he took ownership of the platform. UMSI professor of information Cliff Lampe talked about the outbursts that occurred upon the original announcement of the pending purchase, and then later discussed the adjustments Musk has made and the many questions it has raised in regard to the platform’s future: 

Digital Wellness

The ways in which people—especially children and families—use technology has shifted over the past several years, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. With the increased need to connect with others, learn from teachers, and share special moments with family and friends, it’s important to promote positive boundaries and practice digital wellness. Experts from the School of Information, School of Education, and C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital provide their tips for healthy use of social media platforms: 



By Erica Colaianne and Samantha Stante