How social media turned Valentine's Day into a four-day celebration

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Did you share pictures of your Valentine’s gifts on social media?

Reporter KATIE GUPWELL asks whether social media is killing genuine romance.
WHETHER or not love was in the air for you this Valentine’s Day, it was inescapable online.
Social media users took the opportunity to turn the celebration into a 96-hour display of public affection.
The first thing that cropped up was “Galentine’s Day”, a new trend from America celebrated on February 13, in which women show love for their girl friends.
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Actress Rebel Wilson tweeted about Galentine’s Day to advertise her new film, How to be Single

So girl power reigned on Saturday, as females all over the world, including celebrities such as Amy Poehler and Rebel Wilson, took to social media to praise their favourite ladies. But what did people think of it?
Cardiff student, Jamie Thomas, said: “Although Galentine’s Day was just another social media viral fad, a meme that won’t return next year, I guess it was still a good bit of fun.”
“Palentine’s Day” is also, apparently, now a thing. It’s all about alternatively sharing the Valentine’s love for our best pals. I happened to receive an e-card from one of my best friends, which put a big smile on my face at the weekend (but this was mostly because it incorporated a picture of Kanye West, and was accompanied with the caption “Kanye be my Valentine”).
From Instagram to Facebook, news feeds were jam-packed full of images from roses to chocolates and loving dedications. But in among all the excitement, I can’t help but wonder if Valentine’s Day is still a celebration of love. These days, people seem to think it’s more important to show off their extravagant gifts on social media than spend the day with their loved ones.
Teaching assistant, Lowri Jones, said: “I hate it when any form of gift photos are shared on social media, especially on Valentine’s Day. Material objects do not equal love. It’s pointless.”
Pharmacy student, Liam Volk, had similar thoughts. He said: “Valentine’s Day is just a Hallmark Holiday made up by corporations to make cash off unsuspecting dopes who think that it’s mandatory to outdo each other and use gifts to declare their love to their significant other.
“Social media makes this even worse as it becomes keeping up with the Jones’ to the next level. For one day, Facebook floods with Pandora necklaces, chocolates, enough flowers to create a rainforest at your local Tesco Extra and the lazy engagements which last 10 years. I for one am bored of it.”
This week, the discussion of Valentine’s Day continues as people have turned to sharing images of what’s on offer in the post-Valentine’s Day sales. Flowers are half-price, chocolates are reduced and users of social media are determined to make the Valentine’s theme live on by highlighting bargains you can pick up at the local supermarket.
Enough already. Roll on Easter.