IN the modern world, the use of technology has increased while in-person conversations that used to be an integral part of relationships have decreased drastically. Today, people are often caught in boredom despite having sufficient sources of excitement, and suffer from chronic mood swings.
They behave oddly on certain issues and occasions. Although there are various other factors for such a behavioural change, social media plays a vital role in such a psychological malady.
People in the digital age interact with others belonging to different countries, beliefs, race and psychology. They engage in conversations on social media platforms with their friends from diverse backgrounds and schools of thought. They come into contact with the religious and the liberal, the socialist and the capitalist, the rich and the poor, the teenager and the aged all the time, and some time even simultaneously.
Consequently, they suffer from behavioural complexities and mental imbalance. Thus the old maxim — a person is known by the company he keeps — has finally succumbed to social media.
Moreover, these complexities have changed the true meaning of friendship. Friendship on social media is just a click away. You can be friends with anyone in one click and unfriend or block them in another. People follow and unfollow blindly without any hesitation and moral obligations.
Besides, book reading and writing trends are fading away. Since people spend too much time on social media, they do not get enough time to read books and gain the knowledge from them. As a result, their mental capabilities are restrained with exposure to a lot of different material, comprising both true and false information, which breeds intellectual impotence.
By browsing through a few popular opinions on social media and posting a fancy status, everyone considers himself a brilliant reader and writer. Sometimes, it becomes difficult to resolve a genuine issue despite it being frequently highlighted on social media. This is because excitement without any physical activity produces laziness.
Social media is no doubt an informative forum and the easiest means of communication, but its uninterrupted use and frequent interaction with several unlike-minded people produces mood swings and boredom that results in lethargy.
Therefore, we must know the pros and cons of social media to enable our society to grow in a positive direction.
M. Ibrahim Baloch
Published in Dawn, October 7th, 2021