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How Social Media Changed Birthdays

Social media has changed the way we view our birthdays altogether. Before it was a few drinks at the local bar, a spontaneous trip away for the weekend or a quiet night in with friends. However, now social media has implemented a routine for those celebrating their birthdays, that requires more than just a private commemoration.

The new way to celebrate your birthday is by posting what you’re doing for it on social media, whether that be checking in to a restaurant on Facebook, updating your Instagram Story as your night unfolds or even posting a photo of you holding two balloons that coincide with your new age.

Social Media Wants More

Social media seems to have pushed people to do more. FOMO disorder has left people looking longingly at other people’s social media posts wishing they could do more with their lives, and what’s a better excuse than your birthday to do all the things you said you would? Birthdays used to be a one day event, but with social media you can post your celebrations every day and even in the week leading up to your milestone. This means other users are pelted with videos, photos and status updates of what you’re doing over your birthday – why? Because that’s what social media is for – to boast about what you’re doing and showcase your gifts.

Bye, Bye Birthday Cards

Facebook allows you to post ‘Happy Birthday’ on your friends’ walls and even sends reminders as notifications so you won’t miss your pal’s big day, which is really handy for those forgetful souls. People often create collages, send photos and create videos to send to their friends on their birthdays. The whole idea of a birthday card has been somewhat eradicated by the idea of Facebook’s virtual greeting. Now, you can even have a fundraiser on Facebook for your birthday, so people can donate to a worthy cause instead of buying you personal gifts. You can also send your friend a short video showcasing your celebratory words, which is ideal for those who cannot be there to say happy birthday in person.

Also, you can host your birthday as an event to invite your friends and see who’s attending or not. In the event, you can post regular updates and any changes to your original plans too.

Where Did All the Birthday Magic Go?

Although it’s a great feeling to have over a hundred of your friends wish you happy birthday on your Facebook wall, or receive tweets from those you’d forgotten saying have a great day or view embarrassing photos of yourself on Instagram posted by your best friend, social media has taken away that special element birthdays used to have. It’s also not great for those wanting to forget that they have aged another year.

Remember when people used to actually ring you to say happy birthday? It seems a post on Facebook now suffices instead of a quick phone conversation. Although social media has changed the way we celebrate our birthdays, it should never act as a blocker for real, human communication. If it’s your friend’s birthday, ring them, catch up and plan the day, instead of simply posting ‘HBD! Xx’ on their social media platforms.