THE WORLD LAUGHED when Donald Trump, initially unsure of his victory and riled by the higher popular vote Hillary Clinton got, floated a theory that the US election was rigged and declared he would not accept the verdict unless he won.
Conspiracy theories crop up everywhere. The high-pressure campaign in the social media in India in favour of Narendra Modi was attributed by his detractors, mostly of Congress, as the handiwork of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. Later, when BJP won, the Continue reading EVM Conspiracy Theories
WHAT APPEARS TO BE AN INNOCENT PASTIME OR A COMMUNICATION TOOL, CAN POSE DANGERS. WhatsApp has more than a billion users all over the world, Most ‘smart phone’ users are busy checking messages almost all through the day and till late into night and forwarding most of them, taking up a lot of time and resulting in loss of productivity.
This, however, is not the only danger it poses to civil society. Hate messages, fake news, inflammatory information that can lead to violence, can now be spread to millions of people within an hour, if not in minutes. Pictures, videos and voice can go across the world within seconds. And all that at no cost.
Much of Narendra Modi’s success in the last Parliamentary election can be attributed to WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms which his party used very effectively. The recent event of demonetization was made out to be a major disaster by the Opposition leading to a bitter, personal attack on the Prime Minister, but lakhs of WhatsApp messages going around the country supported his action. And this was reflected in elections that followed. Continue reading A Boon Turns Dangerous Tool
ONE OF THE MAJOR PROBLEMS WHATSAPP USERS EXPERIENCE IS THE NUISANCE OF FORWARDS . The forward has the name (often just the mobile number) of only the person forwarding and not of the original writer. When and where it originated remains unknown. Continue reading ‘Forwarded As Received’
Evolution, though some Americans still reject it, is accepted by all civilised, sane people. Whether evolved from apes as Charles Darwin propounded, or created by God, Man has come a long way from primitive days.
If evolution is continuing, what will Man, Homo Sapiens, evolve into? On this day it seems his next stage is Homo WhatsAppian. The prevalence of WhatsApp all over the world , the addiction of millions to it and the billions of messages that go around the world every minute explains why Continue reading Homo WhatsAppian Evolving
We are an independent, democratic, nation because we choose – between our caste and the rival caste, between fair and black faces, between the known devil and the unknown.
We choose between prostrating, grovelling and cringing before a fair lady and a black man who was doing the same along with us just a few weeks ago. All because she danced around trees with a ‘star’ whom we adored. Continue reading Slaves By ‘Democratic’ Choice
Chinnamma sheds tears with television cameras focussed on her. OPS stages a drama at the Amma Samadhi earlier. Hundreds tweet comments and jokes on the power struggle.
Public memory may be phenomenally short, but not short enough to forget a letter of apology by Sasikala declaring her family members who had become power centres and reportedly amassed wealth as ‘personal non grata’ and then see them all there, as soon as Amma died, to take over the house whose whose doors were closed for them.
So the promise in the letter to keep them away was a lie? The humble, grovelling, ‘mixture mama’ was good enough to be CM thrice, but suddenly becomes a ‘traitor’!
How could a people known to be highly intelligent and capable stand the sight of ministers and legislators prostrating before a ‘leader’, see a Chief Minister to be treated like a menial and stopped from seeing the dying leader after going to the hospital every day for weeks or fall for a politics of freebies and sops to voters at tax-payers’ cost?
The social media are flooded with jokes and comments about the political developments in Tamil Nadu, which seem to be driven by tears, melodrama, Twitter tweets, WhatsAppp posts and blatant power-struggle based not on ideology, policies or capability but personality and gimmicks..
When I joined a newspaper in 1957 after a few contributions were published, it was under a notion that journalism, in a way, was meant for the betterment of society and therefore was social work, the field I was associated from the age of 14.
It took me decades to realise that I was wrong. The Press of the freedom struggle days has become extinct. Print medium is overwhelmed by the TRP-driven electronic media with its sensationalism and hype. Both, therefore, have no time and space for anything not sensational or ‘hot’ news.