Possible Future Scenario :
At a Twitter addiction rehab centre in South Mumbai.
Me : Hi. I am XYZ. And I am a major twitterholic.
Others in the room : Hiiiii XYZ.
There is a group on Facebook which is named : ‘Orkut is dead. Facebook killed it.’ Just like millions of nonsense funny-named groups in there, it couldn’t be truer. I have trodden the path, that same path through which the whole of India has passed. Hi5 Orkut-Facebook Twitter God Knows What!
I have been hooked to all the above mentioned sites at various points of time. This is not a unique story. But never has the addiction been so much. The addiction to Twitter. The fact that this occurs right when my final exams are about to begin probably adds to the intensity of disillusion I have right now, leading all the more to the confession. Mind you, I haven’t confessed worse things and if I want peace, I rather don’t. ;)
I joined Twitter a long time back and for almost a year, I had one tweet which went something like: ‘Hi, trying to understand Twitter’. Character Count: 30 odd. That was the day when I thought, man 140 characters is bit too much! I signed out and forgot about it. It was still the Facebook phase.
Reasons : Demi Moore and Aston Kutcher were the Twitter Gods. Who cares? Shashi Tharoor may have joined, but the public dint know much. Karan Johar hadn’t started his campaign to have every Bollywood person on the site. IPL took place only on the grounds or telly, not on Twitter. The numerous bloggers whom I followed were on it, but I dint know. Probably missed the Twitter widgets on their blogs or maybe was just not interested. And finally, CNN-IBN’s website din’t have stories describing SRK’s mood today based squarely on a couple of tweets many hours back.
Those were the good days. Uncomplicated.
Sometime a few months back, when the site’s popularity was exponentially high from last thought; I decided to jump back in and add to my single tweet.
No sooner had I got the grip of things, I was hooked.
The scope is massive. Unprecedented. In Facebook and orkut, we mostly interact and fool around with our own friends and acquaintances. Though a lot of people send ‘can I be your fraand’ type of scraps etc to nice display-pic girls, more or less, it’s just the people you know. The ones, who are in these sites for business and opportunities make new friends, bounce off ideas etc but from my experience they are in the minority big time. Apart from the respectable chatting and catching up with long lost friends and school/college buddies, social networking is also in the simplest language possible : style maro-ing by putting good pics and updates, bakarchodi and checking out hot looking friends of friends. It is about creating an image which you want people to have of you. Nothing wrong in it. I love it infact.
Twitter is none of that. To a large extent. It is only Twitter where hopeless people can expect to get their 15 characters of fame. Poorly put but I guess the point is made. The major attraction is of course the celebs. All kinds of them. From the real ones, to the silicon ones.
It is real time shit. Info, humour, perspectives - everything. All in real time. The boundaries of our world becomes timelines. Never have we been so fond of scrolling up and down, up and down, all day, all night.
We ping them. The celebs tweets their day schedule. We ping them. The celebs suck upto each other. We still ping them. The celebs let out their philosophical gyan. We again buzz them. The celebs discuss serious stuff.Supposedly serious stuff I mean. And we keep on buzzing them. But whatever goes on, one thing is sure. Everybody is out to prove how intellectually rich they are. Twitter seems like the Calcutta of the online world. :P
And then, one day, we get a tweet back. Which changes our sad twitter life forever.
It could be a small thanks in reply to one of the numerous real or fake sweet messages we sent over the days. It could be a retort to an offensive and non-fake comment (normally comparing him/her to Agarkar) from us. It could be anything. It could be a simple retweet of that message you just sent randomly. It could be anything.
Then we go on overdrive. We begin to follow hi-fi accounts of Wall Street Journal and BBC. So that we can post kick-ass links from them. We follow the #trend-setters. We try to come up with witty comments. We try every trick in the book and this link here captures it better than anybody else.
AND THEN, Sachin Tendulkar comes on board. Just like he has killed various attacks all over the world, he kills various competitors of Twitter. And suddenly, the whole of India has logged in. The history will be now divided into two eras. BS - Before Sachin. and AS - After Sachin.
So if you are a budding entrepreneur, explore the possibilities of Social Networking Addiction Rehab Centres. I tell you what, if you make money on this, please give me some. :P
P.S. Twitter is the truest form of 'social networking' in my book. If you really want a really hilarious, and meaningful time onsite, apart from the usual celebs, please start following and interacting with bloggers. That's the best thing to do on twitter. They are awesome. You wont regret. Not one bit.