The Social Dilemma: Tactics used by social media companies to get people hooked

Netflix's revealing new documentary is convincing more young people to switch off social media.

The Social Dilemma has left many people shocked after revealing tactics used by social media companies to get people hooked.

"A lot of people think Google's just a search box, and Facebook's just a place to see what my friends are doing," said Tristan Harris, who worked as a design ethicist at Google.

"What they don't realise is there are entire teams of engineers whose job is to use your psychology against you."

Eleven-year-old social media user Madeline Stieller said this changed her perspective.

"There was so much that I didn't realise that it was actually making people fight people and that everyone was watching us while doing everything," she told Newshub.

The documentary reveals social media secrets from former employees - some even admitting they don't let their own children go online.

"I think if the people that are quite well informed, they sit at the centre of social media. If they're limited their children's exposure to social media. I think we should do that too," said University of Auckland marketing expert Dr Bodo Lang.

Experts argue even seemingly innocent usage could still lure us in.

"You get rewarded by hearts, likes, thumbs-up, and we conflate that with value and we conflate it with truth," the documentary said.

Netsafe CEO Martin Cocker says users should beware.

"I think realising that they're not entirely in control of that decision or that they're being drawn in by the platform might help them to sort of get some balance back in their lives."