Tuesday, August 16, 2011

News on twitter? What's wrong with that?

The only form of communication I know
Naddi, Himachal Pradesh, India

There’s news coming in fast and quick about Anna Hazare…Anna Hazare’s fast, Anna Hazare’s jail, Anna Hazare’s bail. Sitting in my Manhattan apartment, I feel deprived of the circus usually put up by Indian news channels following a political tamasha, or any tamasha for that matter.

It is on occasions like these, that I appreciate even more the role of Twitter and Facebook in providing real-time updates on the situation back home. I know, there is enough of a case against calling twitter a reliable source for news, but there are just as many who will make a case for it. I add my count to the latter. Atleast, its news with a sense of humour. On a rare occasion, wit too. Provided you’re following the right mix of people. I ensure that my timeline reflects the regular and the ‘reliable’ but also the im-too-cool-for-my-pants dude who picks up the breaking news, adds his own hilarity to it and jolts out his own version of the original serious intonation. What’s wrong with that? There’s enough serious news to go around the internet if you’d rather look that way.

As I look at my twitter stream today, I see a common mass of young India, shocked (some amused) at the events conducted by its own government, I see chants of a ‘second freedom movement’, I see support and encouragement for a man they don’t know – for a man that they might not necessarily agree with but agree to his right to democracy, the right to speak up and the right to protest. More importantly, I see less cynicism about the outcome of the protest and much less ignorance than would have existed without Twitter. :)

Armchair activism? Maybe but again, what’s wrong with that too?

1 comment:

Rahul said...

Twitter has always been the real time messenger for most of us leading a virtually busy life, more so because its not stagnant over one piece of news unlike news channels.

This time around the govt has gone beyond its conceivable limits. I just feel sorry for all of us that we are a free country and still we citizens are so paralyzed. This needs a change, hopefully sun will rise finally this time around.