“The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it”
Sitting in the corner of a coffee shop, sipping coffee and watching people around getting cozier to their cell phones makes me feel pathetic. I often ask this question to myself, have our social contacts died. Am I losing social connection? We live in an era where people seem more comfortable with their cell phones more than their social relations. People are oblivious about the surroundings, how a bird flies, how a breeze flows, how a moment passes because they are so much immersed in their respective mobile phones that they forgot they have a life to live. They are worshipping a necessary evil called Social Media. Social media has dominated both online and offline conversations. It has affected all shades and all walks of life. Social media has destroyed interpersonal communications.
At my home, my mother always rebukes my dad and me for preferring phone over meals. This has become a routine. Whether we admit or not, social media has taken a heavy toll on our relationships. It has succeeded in creating a false sense of intimacy. Today our world thrives on the use of social media. Recently a friend of mine opened up and shared she uses social media more than 12 hours in a day. And she is the same person who scoffs me every day for not using any social media application especially Facebook. “Tou Facebook nahi chalati hai” (You don’t use Facebook). It is the same sentence she repeats when she meets me. And whenever I go out with friends our eyes are always glued to our mobile phones. We hardly talk. Physically we are together but mentally not. This is not my story only; it is the story of every other person. Social media has ceased those meaningless gossips we used to have. Our private life has become public. We are located easily with the posts with the tweets with the pictures we are posting. Life is beyond these posts and tweets. No doubt social media is a beneficial tool it has connected us to greater audience but it can never provide us a real world. Reel cannot replace real. Social media is powerful, big, growing and seemingly indispensable. It has countless number of followers. Still it fails to give that pleasure we get while conversating face to face. It hasn’t that tendency to replace the real world where we have effective social integration. Moments cannot be expressed in tweets, posts or emails they need to be felt. Sometimes tweets, posts, pictures aren’t just enough. Life is meant to be lived and savored.
(The author is a student of mass communication and journalism at Media Education Research Centre University of Kashmir)