Gone are the days when one would refer to technology as a “tool” of communication. Technology today is an amalgam of different genres of a human being himself. It is more like a person’s replica. You can know anyone to a certain extent by going through their social media profile. The lives of your friends are like an open book. You can be roughly aware of how they had spent their year without even having to talk to them in person. This type of category I will call “replica”.
However on the other hand there is also a set of human beings who prefer a more vocalized version of projecting or satisfying themselves. Skype, Google Hangouts, Viber, LINE are their mouthpieces. They won’t be at rest until they share each and every aspect of their day with their parents, friends etc. This type I will call “mouthpiece”.
While the social media replicas are busy projecting themselves, the mouthpieces are creating a bit of a problem.
Samina is a newly married woman who completed her BA honors two weeks prior to her marriage. She is usually found chatting on her brand new smart phone which her husband gifted to her. On the other side of the line is her mother who keeps track of the married life of her beloved daughter through the special free sahulat (facility) of Skype. While the bahu is busy talking, the handi is producing sizzling sounds and by the time she rushes to the kitchen, the milk has already been spilt. It is not just about the handi though, the dirty clothes keep piling up and the grocery is short but the bahu complains that she hardly finds any time to get things done.
Haris lives abroad and keeps in touch with his family through skype. His parents are retired and spend their life at home. Since they are alone, Haris feels it is his responsibility to talk to them for long hours to keep them occupied. While the husband is busy in his ritual, the wife and kids complain that they feel neglected.
Two love birds, rather owls talk till late at night. Their medium is viber, skype and LINE (whatever gives a good connection). One night they fight, the next they spend patching up. This is the story of their true love.
Above were few examples from the category of people I named mouthpieces. It doesn’t end here though. This category is also a constant source of annoyance for the other category: replicas. The replicas who are not interested in being the mouthpieces often ignore these kinds. They go offline as soon as the long-chatters show up. They are just not interested in learning about the boring life of these people or to know their rants or in fact anything about them. Talking these long talks freak the replicas out. They’ll spend hours flaunting and exhibiting themselves on Facebook but won’t agree on talking to the mouthpieces.
The purpose of here is not to degrade any category. The replicas cannot be considered better than the mouthpieces because each one of them is fulfilling their needs equally but through different means. The purpose however is to highlight the state of usage of technology in our society which unfortunately for most of the times is extreme. We human beings love to utilize “free”. We like to hoard any kind of free stuff that comes our way and during this ritual of consumption we forget that not only are we wasting our own time but others around us are also getting affected.
All of us including myself need to understand that we have a part to play in this society and that it is up to us to become a reformer or a trouble maker.