The Social Media Sabbatical

Everywhere I see, be it Twitter or Instagram, someone or the other has decided to go off the network for a while. There are even those who have deleted their profiles or gone on to reset it. Starting anew so to speak. What prompts them to do this?

Some say that it is because of the torrent of comments/replies/enquiries that they get. Some say it is because of the negativity. Even others say it is because the standards of users have gone down. (There are the select few who say they are genuinely bored of all of it. Let’s leave them out of this.) As more and more people begin using social media, of course, the elite-ness will turn into the average. Just like the general population. But does this warrant an “I’m going to delete my account because it’s gone to trash”? Perhaps. Don’t we all remember Orkut? May that particular network RIP. I also remember some of the people I got to know through Orkut. People I recognise through a profile or a username. People I’ve not met ever. Good people.

And I have done the same with Twitter and Instagram as well. All those people, fellow bibliophiles, Chennaites, CSK fans these are a few of the categories that they fit into. But mostly they’ve all been decent folk. These people who share the same interests as me, whom I do not know personally, have let me learn something new whilst staying nonjudgmental.

Then there are those who allege the downward spiral of a social media network. Or the intrusion of privacy. Well, there is a saying – “you reap what you sow”. In this world of finding everything online, information is the easiest to gather. If I get a name, I can find out what vehicle is registered to them or where this person works and lives, their home’s blueprint and whatnot. So, if you put information out there, expect intrusion. Besides once anything is online, it becomes immortal. That information is there for all for eternity. And then there is the case of standards going down. I honestly don’t like people saying the standard of users has gone down. When data plans and wifi were an urban luxury, there were a few who used these platforms. As the internet, specifically, the mobile internet became more accessible, more and more users registered. It is the goal of every social media platform after all. But does it not sound snobbish, a tad bit at least, to say it is now trash. If someone critiques the technical aspect of an app saying it’s trash that’s different but content being user-generated cannot be called trash. Not everyone can be Oscar Wilde or a fashionista.

When people tend to blame the other users, I began thinking if this is their general mentality towards people. Are you really ok with being part of a select few and look down upon others? Do you really consider the general public a nuisance? I really want to know.

On the whole, though, it is their individual opinion and they can do what they want to. To each his own.


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