The subjective nature of social problems is derived from the personal, situational, and ever-changing aspects of social issues. The timing and location of social problems may not always be rigid, and therefore may change in definition or relevance.
Objective perception of social problems is typically not possible due to the varied ways that the issues are perceived. Social issues are constantly changing throughout history, as certain issues take precedence over others, depending on time frame and importance to specific groups in society. Personal bias and viewpoints also greatly affect the perception and reaction to social problems and have an effect on the importance of the issue to an individual.
Some individuals may put far less energy and attention into solving or speaking in reference to social problems than others, and may be influenced greatly by whether or not the issue specifically pertains to them. Issues including racism and sexism may have a divided group based on importance to those giving them attention, and may be given less attention by those who are not negatively affected by their existence in society, causing the effect of the problems to be subjective to those experiencing the issue at hand. Some may view social issues as pertaining more to an individual than a group in society as well, viewing certain social issues as isolated incidents rather than larger and more widespread issues.