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Shah Rukh Khan,Aamir Khan quit Twitter

Few celebs think that sharing too much information could boomerang with haters spitting fire.

According to social media statistics,Twitter has over 500 million users with a growth rate of 11 accounts per second. Going by these figures,it doesn’t take a scientist to see that Twitter is one of the most sought after networking platforms. This intellectual digital networking medium is being used by a diverse set of people such as,social media professionals,celebrities,fans,politicians and even his holiness Dalai Lama.

It wasn’t until 2009 when well known Hollywood celebrities joined Twitter,where celebrity-muddled fans thought that it should be obligatory for their pin-up-poster stars,to share tad-bits about their prolific lives. Soon ‘Twitterati’ was coined,a term used for celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher,Oprah Winfrey for joining Twitter.

It was not long before Bollywood celebrities and filmmakers made their presence felt on Twitter either. However,with Twitter being a rage with well known celebrities as well as the common man,there is also a parallel opinion which runs against the medium. Could it be self absorbing and a liability? Could it breach one’s security? Bollywood Hungama delves in a little deeper to weed out the probable causes and why despite being extremely beneficial,celebrities are becoming Twitter quitters.

While a few celebrities think that sharing too much information could boomerang with haters spitting fire and thwarting their lives,there are some who pay no heed to such paranoia… such as superstar Amitabh Bachchan who pours his thoughts out like a daily journal. The megastar took to Twitter like a fish takes to water. With social media being a diverse and dynamic space,it is implicit going by the frequency of tweets being made by the likes of Sonam Kapoor,Nargis Fakhri,Karan Johar and rest of Twitterati clan,that it benefits from effective communication with an audience.

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“The pros of social media platforms such as Twitter,is that it could do a lot of good for you when it works. The flipside is that,if you loose out on the pace it could work against you,” says Prabhat Choudhary of Spice,a leading public relations agency,which handles many of the top Bollywood celebrities and films.

There are some who reap the benefits of social networking such as Priyanka Chopra,who has a massive fan base of over 3,545,925 followers. She keeps all her fans engaged with a frequency of tweeting every four to five hours. And with the young actress also taking off with her international singing career,Twitter surely helps her keeping in touch with her global fans.

While Twitter works out for stars to endorse their work,there are some celebrities such as Aamir Khan and Ajay Devgn who take to Twitter mostly during their film promotions.

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In contrast to all the reverence and affection that stars are accustomed to,the derisive nature of the platform makes it a new experience for a star. “Along with all the adulation and love Twitter stars get,they get a lot of frankness from the audience which can sometimes lead to plain hostility. The virtual space differs from the real space,where the interaction is amid two individuals rather than between a star and a fan”,says Prabhat on the liabilities imposed on a Twitter star. Going by another outlook,the inability to adapt to social sites could also be cited as a reason for pulling the plug.

Imran Khan is probably the first Bollywood actor,to have consciously quit Twitter. The actor in an interview had stated that he joined the medium for film promotions and also to interact with his fans directly. However,the medium put him off when the questions started getting really personal and his fans expected him to tweet constantly.

But Imran is not the only one. The latest big celebrity who has stopped tweeting completely is Shah Rukh Khan. This happened earlier in the month of January this year after a controversy broke over his article in a prominent magazine about ‘Being a Khan’ in India. “Sad,I read so much judgments,jingoism,religious intolerance on the net and I use to think,this platform will change narrow mindedness,but no!” SRK tweeted last and decided to hang up his social networking boots for being targeted for his views on being a Muslim luminary in the country.

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Prabhat also believes that one should be given enough space to breathe. He says,”I believe that there should be a healthy distance between a star and a fan,for the aura of the stardom to last long. Some stars and celebrities do subscribe to this theory and refuse to join Twitter,or withdraw from it after joining Twitter.”

With this erratic social networking behavior,we observe that despite being advantageous,stars tend to suspend the platform for garnering too much negativity,and receiving a lot of unwanted attention and not to mentioning a slew of bad language. On the other hand,we have Arjun Rampal,Farhan Akhtar who remain resilient in their stand and claim to pay no heed to such negativity or spitfires and choose to benefit from Twitter.

Irrespective of its cons,Twitter is growing stronger as a marketing tool for film promotions in Bollywood. Comments noted trade analyst and film critic Taran Adarsh,”This is a fantastic way of promoting films. I often get calls from producers and filmmakers to ‘Tweet’ a poster or a trailer link of their upcoming films. It establishes a good connection with the fans.”

With the power of social networking growing each day,Twitter will surely continue to impact Bollywood… whether in a good or bad way,remains to be seen.

First published on: 07-03-2013 at 12:35:59 pm
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