8 september 2012


Of all the recent communication tools, networking has almost become a necessity for the modern individual. Every minute of the day, there are live updates, feeds, links, quick texting and much more. The world has shrunk multi-fold and all of a sudden it seems that you are aware of every celebrity’s diet, every cricketer’s statistic or even a latest twist in the enquiry of a corruption case pertaining a Politician. All this and more for free! Welcome to the world of Social Networking.

People get to know what their friends and relatives are up to, even though they are thousands of miles away. Candidates across the globe get head-hunted with dream opportunities. Clientele expands by leaps and bounds for Businesses. Merchandise grows with no extra spending. This can be mainly attributed to fantastic social networking in a global village.

Numerous advantages of being socially networked:

  1. Specific-audience to a general world-wide reach, across the globe.
  2. Aids in Disaster Management and addresses emergencies of social causes immediately.
  3. Great tool of communication for family, a Re-union or even finding a long lost friend.
  4. Quick transfer of information between the team or to an individual.
  5. Good tool for grapevine and opening up cultures of organizations.
  6. Free advertising.
  7. Wider scope of information, especially on forums, groups or blogs.
  8. Problem solving on blogs or forums.

The rewards of social networking could be money as well, but sometimes at a cost.

Let’s elucidate some disadvantages of being in a network circle.

  1. Connected to the world, but Incommunicado to kith and kin: The whole world would know who you are, where were you yesterday and who would you be with tomorrow - but not your own folk. This happens with most of us, especially when these Networking sites offer widgets or apps to support all mobile devices. Individuals are busy updating where they are, what they are doing at that moment, take a photo of the place they visited and add to that, a fancy title and thumb a few comments that would accompany it. This is what I call thumbmania. This becomes a chronic disease and like a few other diseases, it can turn contagious as well. Social Gaming, Online gaming and much more have resulted in relationships breaking-up, families going astray and employment contracts being terminated. Some insignificant start say instant messaging for example, would turn out to be a time consuming monster in reality. It becomes an addiction and with all this there is absolutely no time for one’s own kith and kin. It may take a few days or months for one to realize the infringement of unwanted and overdose of social networking in their lives, but it’s never too late.
  2. Loss of Privacy: A classy case of one of my friends who accompanied us on an out-station Family trip after letting his boss know that he was at home resting, as he needed a holiday after the completion of a lengthy strenuous project. He was shell shocked to know that his boss saw every detail of the trip and all that had happened – thanks to his son who, uploaded the pictures of the trip on a social networking site! It could be very heartening to be on the front cover of a magazine, but one would never wish to have his life permanently in that space, irrespective of him being a celebrity or a common man. Using popular sites for job opportunities, etc., may sound very attractive, but at the same time the price one pays for it is his or her lost privacy, which could be severely compromised.
  3. Safety and Security: We hear of many chilling stories on how a lot of this information falls into wrong hands, especially in today’s world of terror. Updating live feeds or threads in a blog is great fun and it gives one a sense of relief as well, once the task is accomplished. Being knowledgeable and using the right features in a networking site, can save an individual any further embarrassment.
  4. Instant damage: This is the quick-fix world, where an injury can be temporarily cured by an instant spray and dishes can be prepared in a couple of minutes. Similarly one wrong post can lead to a catastrophic end. It could change the way people would look at you again.

Like any other thing in life, an overdose or overuse of social networking sites could work negatively as well. One must take a good look into the objective of being socially networked and ensure there is no compromise whatsoever. It would make sense to do a proper scrutiny of technical settings, etc., so that privacy is maintained within one’s expectations.

Individuals have changed their lives and become more successful owing to their well spread network in a larger database. This style of contemporary communication, where data and voice can be transmitted at high speeds in unlimited quantum has for sure become a boon. However the use of the same depends on the risk and priority appetite of the user that would determine it being a boon or bane.