Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Ab Buzz Bhi Karo

I think I am technologically harassed.

It starts innocuously enough – Google or twitter or something comes up with this one-worder-thingummy. Then because everyone on twitter is punning, funning and moaning about it I go and try and figure out what the heck this is. Mostly, I just get a vague sense of it's use. Then I go back to twitter, or facebook and do the online version of nodding knowledgeably and hope no one will really ask me too many uncomfortable details.

Then, depending on how interesting it seems and how professionally relevant and important it is likely to be, I go back and laboriously wade through sites and manuals to actually understand it.

And when I just about get the hang of it, something new turns up.

Now, I am thinking of going on strike. Because of the following reasons.

1)Six degrees of connection.
All these sites encourage one to be connected to people. The problem is I am already connected to those people – in five different ways. Most of them I don’t even want to be connected to in ONE way.

2)The never ending echoes.
The corollary to point 1. Since I am connected to the same person in six different ways, I am also privileged to hear that person’s opinions/post/comment/remark six different times in six different places. It’s like a iterative, looped vortex of the same thing again, and again, and again ...

3)Technological debris.
One of the recurring complaints I have heard from our generation is about the amount of clutter our parents managed to collect–from those ubiquitous plastic fruits in the showcase to absolutely useless curios falling over every flat surface in the house. We resolve to have minimalistic houses with no material junk. Then why the heck should I litter my mind with all this technological jumble (isn’t that just what we are doing?) Frankly it’s getting hard to disentangle the useful stuff from the bric-a-brac.

4)The pressure of the unfunny.
People write things, post updates, post pictures, flood with emoticons share each and every dreary minutiae of their life as if it is the world’s wittiest write up or sexiest photograph. And expect you to participate and react to it. And get offended if you don’t.

5)The Attendance Marker.
The corollary to point no.4, there are some people who feel obliged to comment, remark, generally mark their attendance on YOUR posts. Usually with something utterly inane and irrelevant just to show that they are present. Most of my posts are completely arbitrary vents or white noise which I jot down. I have no idea how to react when someone says “Nice” or “: p” to them.

6)The Personality Full Monty.
In offline interactions once can chose just what level of personality exposure one chooses to do – one can go all the way with some people, or just take out a sock or two to others. Social media does not allow one the luxury of that. Its either the whole hog or nothing.

7)The Truman Show.
The corollary (I think) to point to 6. Some people apparently WANT to live their life in the public eye. Therefore unsuspecting audiences are subjected to nauseating public displays of affection, love, and lust by couples and other related people. How many times have you seen a flood of comments on a photograph written by a spouse saying “my prince charming” or something else in that vein? Get a room, already.

8)The #tag.
One of the most annoying inventions of all time MUST be the #tag – some people apparently cannot construct a single sentence without flooding the sentence with these useful attention-grabbing things. Soon we will have conversations that go
“Oh you know my auto broke down on the road #fail #traffic #roads #municipality #bandra #bombayauto“

So now in protest I am going on a connectivity sanyas. Hmpf.

Absolutely incoherent rant this is- started out against buzz and I have no idea where it ended. Hmmm.


D said...

Not incoherent at all! Makes perfect sense to me.

Mehak said...

haha, this was fun to read. and i agree on all the points!

Lazy Pineapple said...

Nice :P hahahha...well I tried.

What you have written is absolutely true...I have myself taken sanyas from FB...It was a bugger to see all the above things mentioned. People sending me smiles and teddies and stuff. I know it was a sweet gesture but they are sending the same bloody thing to 50 other people...

oops my comment turned into a rant hehe
So taking a break is actually refreshing.

Anonymous said...

Quizzes, fan clubs, stalkers, "like"ers, pokers, farmers,gangsters... Damn FB sounds a lot like my Coimbatore college now!

Gypsy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shachii said...

Nice ;)

full_moon_p said...

Corollary to 5)The Attendance Marker- I'm terrified of posting my comment here!

But jokes aside, I like reading your work as it's well written; I like the fullstops after headings.

Some think I'm a show off when I punctuate properly and don't type ' frm, ur, $$, fr, ' and the rest of the endless list.

I sometimes cheat on myself and sneak-in badly spelled words to keep the wolves off my back. I'm thinking 'bout going on a strike too!

Satish Bhat said...

Hi Cyn, good to see your posts are back !

"reaching out", "socialize" , "making space" and "network" could do with a nice verbal holiday for some time...

suki said...

Hey Cynic,

I am a regular reader of your blog.

I've enjoyed reading your posts. This one was very timely and true and fun too.

er.. not marking attendance, but didn't want to be a anonymous lurker either. :-)

Cynic in Wonderland said...

D - felli frustrated with net person???

mehak - thanks hehe. was hugely annoyed when i fired this off.

lazy pineapple - oh i periodically take sabbaticals as well. the whole networking thing can get damn toxic.

young gypsy - where have you been studying child? sounds like the kind of place i would want to go to.

shachii :P

Full moon - critiques about comments were not for blog. it was for facebook more than anything else. where obviously bored people react.

satish - oi. congratulations to you!!!

suki yayyy i LOVE delurkers. please dont go into hiding again thank you verr muchly.

P said...

Solution: Don't let yourself to be harassed. You will be called unsocial, pompous etc. for sometime by some and then you will be left alone in peace. Then you will be free to do just what you really feel like doing in the virtual world and nothing more.

Source of solution: Own life, of course.

On Google Buzz: How dare they automatically add me as 'follower' for 34 people without my permission??? I 'unfollowed' all of them :D

popsie said...

Not marking attendance, but loved reading yet another post of yours.:)
Keep em coming!

Mansie said...

COmes at a time when I have taken FB sanyaas(or tryin to), the only networking site i am connected to. the world is gripped by Too-much-information-syndrome.

makes perfect sense.

Gayatri said...


Delurking to comment. You have articulated something that I only fume about in my mind. Thanks