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The ‘Facebook’ Decade: A Review of Scholarly Literature on Adolescents and Youths’ Use of Social Networking Sites in Zimbabwe in the Period 2006 – 2016
There is a lack of comprehensive records of the chronological emergence of social networks sites (SNS) in Zimbabwe, particularly with respect to adolescents and youths in general. Therefore the current literature review aims to assess what is known about the use of social networking sites by adolescents and youths in Zimbabwe and evaluate its influence on the general well-being of this national subset. The review explores what knowledge has been generated by scholarly evaluations of use of SNS in Zimbabwe by adolescents and youths. Most of this literature has focussed on ethical and philosophical considerations through analyses of patterns of use and effects of social media on the specific user cohorts and are generally themed around impacts, influences, perceptions, attitudes and pedagogical potential of social networking sites by students in higher education. The use of SNS by high school students who, as teenagers, are widely acknowledged as the major users of social networking sites has not received much scholarly attention. Despite the potential to contribute and improve adolescent and youths access to information and enhancement of student grades, safe use of SNS is a global concern that is locally exacerbated by paternalism and protectionism towards this group of users. The multidisciplinary nature of SNS has resulted in greatly varied sources of information. However, despite proven usefulness, the potential value of SNS has been negated by instances of unethical use by adolescents and youths.