Monthly Archives: June 2012

Social Media

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No, this is not another rant on feminism or the opposite (what do you call a woman who is the antithesis of feminism?? – a traitor maybe :P), but here is something I saw on facebook – a quote by Lady GaGa (I can not believe I am quoting Lady G, but just goes to show you – pearls of wisdom are found everywhere!).

So, the talk of the day- Social Media. To many of us, this takes us back to the good ol’ days of MySpace or Orkut. For others,this means facebook or twitter. For yet others, the career minded folks, this means LinkedIn.

I  am a part of the generation that went wild with Orkut, and were the first few “collegiate” users of facebook-back when it was limited to university students with a “.edu” email account. It was a great way to find old friends one had not seen or spoken with in years. i found my best friend from first grade, 20 years after we had bid each other a tearful adieu at the age of 6. It was great- fun way to keep in touch. Not as formal as emailing and you didnt need to call if you felt awkward doing that. And  you could upload pictures so people knew what you were up to.

In my mind, any social media is virtual friendship. You have the joy of being appreciated and accepted by 30 other people you have probably not seen in years, if ever. It gives me an illusion of friendship with acquaintances. It makes you feel like you are a part of a big, but close community, when in reality you might not meet above one person a day!

To those of us, like yours truly, that dont have a huge gang of friends to hang out with, fb can be very addictive.

So what manner of social media addicts you? Have you tweeted today? 🙂

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Letters on paper vs letters sent via electrons

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My sister and I spoke about this at length the other day. About how we used to write letters, decorate the pages with drawings, draw little faces etc. And the joy of receiving a letter in the mail was something else…made me feel important to have something addressed to me, and it felt like a birthday gift to open a letter.

I guess the feelings are addictive – thats what makes me shop online so much is the excitement of receiving something in the mail (Hint – if people still wrote me letters, I wouldnt shop so much :P)

So what is it about letters on paper that seem so much more personal and real than seeing something on a computer screen? Maybe the smell of the paper that started its journey far away, the writing on the paper that you know belongs uniquely to the one that wrote you. Maybe it is the fact that someone bothered to pick up a pen and find paper, stick stamps on the envelope and post it to you. Something like facebook….a birthday message on fb is just not as personal or special as a phone call, just because it takes less thought and effort to do that.

So ultimately, human nature cherishes that which requires the other person to actually think of you. Fair enough.

Now, Im a software professional, so running down technology is not my aim. In fact, I firmly believe that had I solely depended on romantic old letters to keep up my relationship with my family, I would not know half the things I do about their lives. Like the fact that my 8 month old nephew has been colicky for a couple nights. Who writes that in a letter?

Ive always owned to being a see saw..so while Im a romantic who loves reading paper books more than e books, and loves writing paper letters more than emails, Im also practical and know what emails and facebook posts bring to us. facebook helped me find a friend I hadnt seen or heard from since first grade, it helps me remember all birthdays that I would otherwise have forgotten – and if I want to be personal after that and send along a card or gift, fb doesnt stop me.

So which way does my see saw settle? I believe it has attained perfect balance. I read paper when I wish to, read ebooks when I travel, and mostly use emails to communicate. Hey, its all about convenience. And as for memories? I believe there is less chance of me losing an email than a letter :)!!