Let’s face it. Smartphones and everything about social media is strangely addictive. From posting your party pics, promotion announcement, how you feel, what you are planning to wear, what you are eating or when you are planning to poop, it’s out there, every minute, every second!
There have been countless debates (even reports) on smartphone and social media addiction, especially among millenials. Every now and then, we have people talking how we should inculcate the idea of disaffection towards gadgets and disassociate ourselves from going all open and public about our personal lives. But how many of us are really good at this? Don’t you agree that the extremes have made the mastering a bit of a callous task?
At present, it will be incorrect to say that the world doesn’t judge us on social media. Hell, it does. It will be an outright lie if we say, we don’t care how many ‘likes’ we get on our photos on Facebook, how many ‘new’ followers we gained on Insta and Twitter and how popular our updates and other posts are.
But does any of it make us happy from inside?
Does it make us feel better on an otherwise dull and gloomy day? Does that help us cope with our breakup? If we are troubled or need to be around people to feel comforted, won’t we just call ‘em instead of posting it on social media?
To add to that, social media platforms are coming up with features and updates that let you get involved in things that hardly matter to you or anyone for that matter. For e.g. you can contact strangers on Facebook, personal chatting options even on sites like Instagram, create and send videos on SnapChat, stalk people on dating apps, share secrets and personal details on sites and apps that supposedly claims to maintain your anonymity.
Are We Becoming Slaves To Social Media? Is There Anything Left Which Is Strictly Personal?
If we take a moment and ask ourselves if the world should really know what we are doing right at this minute or what are we about to do? Can we cherish the happiness with people who really matter instead of letting the extended virtual family (who we barely meet or talk to in most cases) know about it?
Here are few of the things that make us wonder and also it should make you wonder. Let’s try asking ourselves or our friends about these.
Q1: Who needs to know/see the following on our social media accounts? Or will we die if we don’t share these?
a) What are you doing (finding ways to be happy, trying to kill someone etc)
b) What and where you ate?
c) What are you planning to wear?
d) How many hours you have been without sleep?
e) What a Gatsby you were at that party.
f) Share something as personal and as private as your honeymoon moments?
g) What are you feeling? Reckless, restless, careless, loved et all.
h) Illogical rants about an unsuccessful love life.
i) Checking into your office every single morning (don’t be surprised, there are people who do this!)
j) History of your weight loss. Week 1, Week 2, Week 3 so and so forth.
Q2: Who would be interested in seeing these? Where are we heading out with these?
a) Morning selfie/goodnight selfie/frowning selfie/post workout selfie etc.
b) Complaining about things that cannot be changed. (like travelling in metro, traffic situation of certain areas)
c) Selfie with bae at different places.
d) Because you look beautiful today, because I miss you, because I am getting bored kind of pictures/selfies.
e) Random photoshopped images.
Q3: Here is the third set of updates that we should logically post because you get a chance to reach out to a bigger network. Ironically, you would agree with us on most of these.
a) You or any of your family members or a friend is down with a medical emergency and you need some major help.
b) You need help with directions getting somewhere.
c) You generally want to enquire about an organization.
d) Seeking suggestions regarding which restaurant you should try a new cuisine at.
e) You are travelling and you need to know the places you should visit.
f) Sharing pics of an important family function for your distant relatives.
g) Raise alert about a particular service/brand which was disappointing, inquiry about your missing friend or alerting people about weather condition or natural calamity in a certain area.
While there is no denying how social media has been a boon in a lot of ways but what needs to be self-examined is how we are helping our virtual friends out there. Are we raising awareness about things which are informative and can help the virtual world?
And, most importantly, is there a reason to surrender to social media just to prove your existence and make your presence felt? Quite not we say!
We Can’t Do Without Social Media, Then What?
The bottomline is social media is a vicious circle which needs a bit of balancing. And, we will slowly get there someday, maybe!