Social media is not only a source of entertainment but has also helped form opinions on major social issues time and again. Negating the significance of social media in an age of information would simply mean being deported to a barren island with no one to talk to.
The magnetic force that keeps us inclined towards the media is its power to create awareness about the happenings around us. While being a resourceful medium of conveying the updates, it has also become an affordable means to gain knowledge and skills. Google, YouTube and Whatsapp are some of the most revolutionary innovations of this century.
They provide not just a platform to learn and teach but have become a convenient mode of earning some extra money through getting specified subscribers and likes as well. Facebook has wide reach and connects people across the globe effortlessly. We can’t ignore the pivotal role of media in exposing corruptions, scams and scandals as well. Social media provides a platform to people to express themselves freely.
However, the benefits of social media come with its share of demerits. The recent episodes of mob lynching in some regions of North East and Northern states of India depict the lack of sensibility in people who blindly follow Facebook and Watsapp trolled messages that spread rumours about someone being a cow smuggler or child lifter. With the internet providing so much of freedom to its users, the incidents of hate speech, hate videos, fake news and abusive content have flooded the social media platforms so much so that it has ended up creating disappointment and disillusion amongst the youth. Online games such as ‘Blue Whale ‘Challenge’ have the potential to cause fatalities or serious damage to the life of a person. They have been reported to instill suicidal tendencies in kids or youth involved in the game and many kids did actually lose their lives to such ridiculous games.
Media has the smartest weapon — communication. Through this weapon, it can control and curb many evils but at the same time can exploit emotions of people and misguide them. Being a responsible messenger of the society, media needs to disseminate only the needful and evade unnecessary things. It has to act more responsibly in the backdrop and understand that it has the power to shape its audience’s imagination.