The Social Irony- Encompassing the Problems of Social Media

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Problems of Social Media

So, my cousin Farhan was blessed with an angel of a girl. He updated his status saying how happy he is for the new addition to the family; the status had 145 likes, and only 7 of them went to the hospital to check on the family – Uncanny.

 

No matter how weird it seems, it is a norm to keep your self updated and synched through facebook or twitter. You passed an exam? Got a high paying job? Had a good time? – Put it on facebook! Got a new girlfriend? Got married? Broke up? – Change your relationship status! You name it, they got it! From a child’s birth to his natural/unnatural death/disappearance, facebook will always keep you updated about him; his friends will open a “fan page” to mourn his death, if it is necessary! You may ignore to join in on the fan page, but don’t you dare ignore the memorial service event page. Your ignorance is going to hurt your friend, and he is going to haunt you down and take you with him – so, a simple way to avoid that is by clicking on “attending”; your friend is in peace. So, there are 6000 people attending on facebook, but 60 people finally show up. It doesn’t end there. Nothing ends without pictures, not even a memorial service. So, you take truckload of “sad duckface” pictures and with the “wi-fi” that you use, you upload them on facebook, captioned by “Far and Away – Myles Kennedy” because irrelevance is the new thing – job well done, photographer.

 

Then one fine day, when you have 105 people online, the earth starts to mumbo jumbo. Whether you are sure or not, you have to be the first one to scream out – “EARTHQUAKE” with God knows how many exclamation marks. I sometimes wonder how one can hold his breath to scream for that long. So, after the status, the whole community of earthquake specialists is divided into three sections:

  1. The merit listers: They are the most intellectual being of the community; they spotted the earthquake first, updated their statuses before everyone and with an evil grin on their faces, they stare at other status updates.
  2. The fanatics: The majority is in here. They do not care when they updated their statuses, but they enjoy looking at all the other updates; likes, comments and shares – what is interesting about Earth doing a Moonwalk.
  3. The normal people: These are the minority for a reason; no one likes them because they do not care when and where the Earth danced on her prom, they just do not want a load of “EARTHQUAKE”s in their home pages.

 

And when everything subsides, we meet a phenomenon which made greater contribution to the Earth than Sir Issac Newton’s Gravity – Chain Messages.

 

So, I saw “Halum Mama” sitting beside me that night, telling me to tell you that he told me: he will eat you if you don’t tell everyone else tell others. Now, how do you tell people? You either, repost the status or share the meme. The post might come with a picture of Halum Mama too, and in fear of Halum Mama’s soft and spongy teeth, you share that picture. Then, just like the Black Plague, it spreads like wildfire, threatening mankind’s existence and forcing them to share and keep the chain going. The ultimate advantage is taken by the “humanitarian organizations”, because if you do not share to “donate” a dollar to a picture of a poor kid in hunger or in pain, he is going to die. So, to fulfill your responsibility as a proper citizen, you share the picture and urge others to share – so deep.

 

So, we have pictures from a memorial service, the earthquake committee and messengers sending messages in a facebook bottle – facebook has been over-used and the benefits have been exaggerated. Even still, we are all fine, and we do not want to change our ways. Leaving the “reality” aside, let us come to face the truth. In times of facing real world problems of mending poverty and helping a child in distress, or supporting your friends’ families when they pass away, the goals will never be achieved by a particular facebook “like, comment, share or attending”. These problems go beyond that and the real actions, as opposed to the virtual ones, will be remembered for decades to come. So, it is up to you to choose. Which world are you going to live in?

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