Updated: March 30, 2015 11:35:24 am
By Jyotsna Mohan Bhargava
‘Congratulations darling you got engaged!‘
‘No that was two days ago. We have already broken off.”
And those two days happened to be just the days I didn’t get onto the social media. A world of its own, from debates on bans to the bun in the oven literally and figuratively. Clearly these days your life is an open Facebook.
For me there are broadly four types of Facebook users.
Let’s start with the youngest. The teenagers just allowed by their parents to open an account. And if these parents aren’t very social media friendly themselves, then it’s a whole world of freedom. Their pictures make me feel like I was probably still reading Nancy Drew as a teenager. No forget the teens, I couldn’t have matched them even in my twenties. The shots are free flowing, girls are carrying Bottegas’ for their school farewell party and the scantier your display picture the better.
Does anyone remember 17-year-old Axelle Despiegelaere who got a modelling deal with one of the biggest cosmetic companies when her painted, animated face at the stadium during the last football World Cup went viral? Once the cosmetic giant went to her Facebook account and saw her proudly posing after a big hunt, they wasted no time in terminating her contract.
So yes what you write or show on Facebook stays on Facebook. Your boss may already know your habits when you apply for a job. In the modern world, this is likely your background check.
Then there are the mothers. I am one and I like other people’s kids too. But do I need to know on an almost daily basis what they have eaten and how many steps they walked today. Please win the big races but maybe we could do away with the crawling stage? Because your first time scribble will be framed only by your parents. And your child’s day cannot always have a profound meaning. Someone please get family scrap books back!
And what of all the single – mostly working men and women out there. Who by the way are my third category. They love their nephews and nieces but they didn’t sign on to childbook or maidbook. Maybe an occasional kid dancing is cute but seeing the same child from three different angles? So if you as a mother are having a rough day – your fridge isn’t working, your kids are sneezing why then are these happy shiny single people who also work from morning to night being made to read it. A friend once told me that I use Facebook as my personal Google. ‘Anyone know of a driver, anyone been to Kasauli etc’. I was guilty.
Some of the people closest to me are single and hardworking. They patiently sit through with their awww and aaahs. Their status update isn’t about exhaustion from travelling non stop for work or about being constantly on a conference call. So if you are having a rough day get a coffee and let them get theirs.
Now I come to those who need to check in. Not things but themselves! Okay so you ‘checked’ into a premium lounge. Great, we all now know you don’t travel cattle class. Or you checked into some hotel in Budapest. Yes that has exotic value. Even Cafe Coffee day in some part of Delhi because maybe someone somewhere is craving that same coffee and you have made him jealous. But to check into a hospital?
Everyone is immediately concerned and before you know it fifty people have asked the same question – are you fine? No reply. So you are worried, but then you also wonder if someone is so unwell would they have the presence of mind to broadcast it unless they really wanted to. Why would you want the world to see a picture of your hospital room. Aren’t some things better off being private? Even that Candy you are Crushing?
PS : If I haven’t wished any of you on your birthday, it’s not because I didn’t want to. It’s probably because I didn’t log on that day.
The views expressed by the author are personal. The article was first published in the blog Jo’s World. Log on to http://jomohan.wordpress.com/ for more articles by the author
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