The advent of social networking sites in Indian lives has completely changed the way people communicate with each other. Instead of face–to–face communication, people these days prefer to “tweet”, “scrap” or write things on their “wall”. Social media is becoming an increasingly intrusive part of our lives. This can be seen from the fact that has turned into a platform for emotional outbursts, bitching, making holiday plans, flaunting new assets etc.
But then, it is not that simple and nice out there in the big bad world of the Internet. There have been a number of cases / issues –
- A boy was kidnapped and killed for ransom after he befriended some people through Orkut and talked about money
- A techie from Pune tweeted about his 10 – day holiday plans on Twitter only to return back home to find his entire house burgled with a note left by the thieves “Thanks for the tweet”
- There have been a number of cases of paedophiles on Facebook who have target children
- Employees have been removed from their respective organizations for making public certain classified information. This has forced organizations like Wipro and Infosys to come up with drastic measures like a social media policy and a blogging policy
Such problems are not only faced by random people. The big bad world of celebrities has not been left behind with Shashi Tharoor and Lalit Modi facing unceremonious exits from their respective positions due to their tweets.
So where does the basic problem lie?
Why are Indians, many of whom who may not dare to talk about many things in real life, in a hurry to constantly update their social networking accounts with such information?
- Social networking sites are being increasingly viewed as a means of escapism to move away from the real world.
- Social media is being increasingly regarded as a place where the right and the wrong blur in the minds of the people
- People haven’t really understood the correct meaning as well as reach of the online medium and are just in a hurry to keep updating their accounts. It is increasingly becoming a way to differentiate yourself in a peer group. People with more tweets, followers or scraps etc. are regarded as great
- A number of people also have the myth that going online makes them anonymous in the eyes of the world and they can post anything
The need of the hour is educating the masses on the reach of the online medium as well as the use of these social networking sites. Jobs, Spouses, Friends – people are losing everything due to poor understanding of such a medium.
The obsession with the online medium makes one wonder whether and only when a person faces such a situation he would realise what wrong he is doing!
There have been thousands of posts to such effect cautioning social media users, but still I see silly updates literally on daily basis that have potential to create issues, either now or later in their lives.
One Again – Please think twice before you put a Social Media update!
What is your take on it ?