In the times that we live, I think it’s almost impossible to sieve the personal from social. Take for example, a professional contact on your WhatsApp who reveals his/her state of mind everyday through status, or that distant acquaintance who unabashedly tweets every inexplicable state of mind at the drop of hat. In times such as this, everyone is a possible celebrity, with no personal life unless you can practice yogi-like restraint from baring it all (mind, I mean) on social networks. From the narcissistic selfies (Mr Satya, please have ‘selfies’ incorporated in your MS Word dictionary; there’s that ugly red underline beneath) on Instagram to the clichéd “what’s on your mind” on Facebook to 140 characters to whatever, we are socially recording the chronicles of our everyday lives, for everybody we know and don’t know. Don’t get me wrong, I am one of them, and sometimes I self-evaluate my own psychological condition when I impulsively (or compulsively?) tweet a random thought or my self-acclaimed quotes that might surface through a latent thought floating deep in the well-oiled machinery of my seldom-accessible consciousness.
I follow about 2000 users on Twitter and they have influenced me in many ways that I tweet. I love Twitter, first. Why? Because it opens me to the world of like-minded, distant, non-judgemental earthizens who might share my virtues and vices. It connects me to the unknown. It’s a high to be floating in Twitter, and discovering those who follow you through “who to follow” or a simple hash tag search. You follow them back, discover them and feel good about knowing other human manifestations of Tweeps (don’t be surprised to see the terrible slow-paced Oxford incorporate the word sooner than later). Sticking to my own self here (which again is a social medium, albeit ‘owned’), I took to Twitter to voice non-personal stuff that remained unspoken on borders of my mind. Gradually and habitually, it took personal overtones, and now there’s a great mix. The response is rather discouraging but a retweet or a reply here and there keeps me going.
Coming back, as social media landscape broadens (what’s next? Mood-sharing website? Somebody the other day wanted to send me a hi-five through mobile) and the society finds itself suffer from syndromes to disorders, we might soon find ourselves writing “Dear Diaries” on portals (now, that might be a good idea for a start-up) and invite suggestions to reactions (that’s the reason we are vocal on social media anyway).
I have no idea where social media is going (I don’t speculate), but we are on the verge of putting ourselves naked (metaphorically, and in some cases, literally) before all.