The power of social media is immense. It can magnify, blow out of proportion, minimise, our totally neglect any issue.
It can also create issues where none exist. Create echo chambers for narrow and bigoted minds and in the process convert the fringe to the mainstream.
Worst is the sway it holds over common people, who base their opinions, way of thinking and judgements totally on the social media.
People don’t bother to see the material on social media with a proper context. They don’t bother to counter-check or verify the facts before sharing the social media material. They are fooled or allow themselves to be fooled by the wrong timelines, wrong geography, wrong history and preposterous myths. They steadfastly believe in quotes which are twisted and presented without the context in which they were spoken. And they are unable to exclude And neglect the general exaggeration of situations and issues from the posted material.
This misinformation is again viewed through the individual filters of identity and beliefs. Every individual has a inherent bias. And this information viewed through that bias makes it a potent weapon. Leading to my pain vs their pain, my suffering vs their suffering, my losses their vs their losses way of thinking. Hastening the further disintegration of the collective.
One can safely say that Social Media has been the first pandemic to affect humankind in this century. COVID is the second.
And like with COVID, people have no clear answers about how to handle the power of social media.
Most are getting carried away and a few are using it to the hilt, for their own benefit. And in the process are promoting sectarianism and divisive ideas and philosophies.
In the end it is a weapon like any other weapon. And throughout history, invention and possessions of weapons have not provided any benefit to the society as a whole. It may have helped a few fragments of society here and there but more importantly have been the reason for the collective loss of the humanity as a whole.
The chaos happening in the US cities can happen anywhere in the world. It has been precipitated by the brutal killing. But it was waiting to happen due to the hardening of opinions and narrowing of thoughts facilitated by the all pervasive social media.
Humanity is at cross roads right now. And the path we choose will define our future for years to come.
P.S. Problem is not political people. Problem is Social Media. The earlier we realise it the better. Because if not the present politicians then some other politician would have used it. And after the present lot of leaders some other rising leaders will use it to further their agenda.
If someone as a concerned citizens wants to do anything he/she needs to neutralise the weapon.
How to neutralise it is a big question ?
Can’t stop it.
Can’t stop people from using it.
Then what can be done?
Food for thought……..