So­cial Me­dia Hype

Slogan - - CONTENTS - Javed An­sari

Many voices have been raised in re­cent times as to what so­cial me­dia can and can­not do. For what­ever rea­sons, Pak­istan is one of those coun­tries where peo­ple seem to have taken to so­cial me­dia with a lot of hunger. The re­sult has not been in it be­com­ing a lu­cra­tive ad­ver­tis­ing and mar­ket­ing ve­hi­cle or a means of widely dis­sem­i­nat­ing use­ful and con­struc­tive knowl­edge and in­for­ma­tion. The ar­eas where the ve­hi­cle has be­come most pop­u­lar are those of gos­sip, mis­in­for­ma­tion, heck­ling and un­nec­es­sar­ily cre­at­ing hype about peo­ple, groups and events that wouldn’t have mat­tered oth­er­wise.

A re­cent ex­am­ple is that of a per­son called Qan­deel Baloch. Her life has al­legedly been snuffed out by her brother but the very rea­son why she de­vel­oped some sort of ‘celebrity’ fol­low­ing was noth­ing else but an un­nec­es­sary so­cial me­dia build-up of her per­son­al­ity. The plat­form that she con­ve­niently used to at­tract peo­ple to her pho­tos and other ac­tiv­i­ties was the so­cial me­dia. Qan­deel was not a film or TV ac­tress and nei­ther had she done any­thing else in show­biz that mer­ited so much at­ten­tion. She was even out­rightly re­jected when she ap­peared for an au­di­tion in ‘Pak­istan Idol’ for putting up a bad show and she did not suc­ceed in do­ing any­thing else. How was it then that she be­came such a pop­u­lar so­cial me­dia per­son? It was the so­cial me­dia that cre­ated the orig­i­nal hype about her – a trend that was then picked up by the con­ven­tional me­dia. There were even re­ports, while she was alive, that she had been ap­proached by cer­tain TV chan­nels to ap­pear in their shows as this would en­able these me­dia out­lets to build their own rat­ings.

The fact is that so­cial me­dia can­not be con­trolled in any part of the world. This is why many coun­tries im­pose re­stric­tions on the in­ter­net to keep tabs on how this emerg­ing plat­form is be­ing used by their cit­i­zens. While there would be many who would not ap­prove of such re­stric­tions be­ing im­posed in Pak­istan but the man­ner in which so­cial me­dia is erod­ing so­ci­ety and foul­ing the at­mos­phere, it is high time that some kind of ac­tion be taken in this re­gard, and things are not al­lowed to run amok in an un­con­trolled fash­ion.

From this month, read­ers will no­tice a dis­tinct change in the way the pages of Slo­gan are de­signed and pre­sented. To be­gin with, the radius of the mag­a­zine has been widened and con­tents have been made more com­pre­hen­sive. This would be ob­vi­ous in the slugs/head­ers for each ar­ti­cle, which are now big­ger, dif­fer­ent and pre­sented in a more in­ter­est­ing font style. But this is not the end as the mag­a­zine is al­ways open to read­ers’ sug­ges­tions in terms of new ar­ti­cle ideas and pre­sen­ta­tion. Please write to us at our ed­i­to­rial ad­dress given in the mag­a­zine or at info@slo­ You can also ac­cess our web­site – www.slo­ - to read the mag­a­zine on­line.

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