Date of Defense


Date of Graduation




First Advisor

Sunday Bonifas

Second Advisor

Amanda Remo


The most popular social media companies today all monetize primarily through the same revenue stream, advertising. Popular social media strategies have developed similar methods to increase the advertising revenue that each user generates. These strategies for monetization have become ever increasingly exploitative and harmful to the social media user population as these major companies are gripped in a technological arms race to capture as much of their user’s time and attention as possible. The effects of increased social media use are a general overall decline in our society’s physical, emotional, and social health (Haugen, 2021 & Harris, 2019). These health effects occur at higher rates among the younger strata (ages 13-24) of our social media-using population (Hilliard & Parisi, 2021).

I assert that the root cause of these effects is not the mere existence and willful use of social media platforms by the population. It is the necessity to build a harmful platform that exists solely to force advertisement upon its “users” to exist as an economically viable social media company that is the root cause. In simple terms: social media is bad because it pays to be bad.

The question central to this work is: How is the current state of social media monetization unethical and how should companies monetize social media platforms ethically?

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access

Defense Presentation (FINAL V3).pdf (1993 kB)
Defense Presentation

Digital Wellness Tools.pdf (395 kB)
Digital Wellness Tools

NEW Wellness Flier.pdf (446 kB)
Wellness Flier

Included in

Accounting Commons