The best way to know the self is feeling oneself at the moments of reckoning. The feeling of being alone, just with your senses, may lead you to think more consciously. More and more of such moments may sensitize ‘you towards you’, towards others. We become regular with introspection and retrospection. We get ‘the’ gradual connect to the higher self we may name Spirituality or God or just a Humane Conscious. We tend to get a rhythm again in life. We need to learn the art of being lonely in crowd while being part of the crowd. A multitude of loneliness in mosaic of relations! One needs to feel it severally, with conscience, before making it a way of life. One needs to live several such lonely moments. One needs to live severallyalone.

Monday, 31 December 2012

SOCIAL MEDIA INITIATED PROTESTS MATURING IN INDIA: FROM ANTI-CORRUPTION MOVEMENT TO THE DELHI GANGRAPE PROTESTS (I)

2012 was a year that showed us all that all the talks about the ‘immature social media hype creating the anti-corruption protests of 2011’ were so utterly misplaced.

Indeed the trend on social media this year qualitatively refuted this assumption.

Agreed, it was not anywhere near to the groundbreaking role social media played in the Arab Spring or in the ‘Occupy’ protests, but the elements here do established that they could act serious and responsive when needed and the future is going to see more uniformity in the response.

Given the Indian demographics and the related sociological patterns, the frivolous use of social media is bound to take a larger share in the country. The youth forms the majority of the Indian population. Majority of them are half-baked and alienated. And they are not to blame for it. It is their socioeconomic condition, a poor education infrastructure and the psychological stress to earn anyhow, that does them in.


The major concern of this half-baked majority is bread and butter. Obviously, the call to fight for change would come later on for them. Whatever the time they get away from the daily routine of doing to earn, would naturally go to the recreation stuff, be it the traditional media or the social media, if they are using it.

But the 2012 told us we are in the transition mode towards the increasing clout of the socially-responsible social media use. The response to two public uprisings tells us this.

The anti-corruption movement launched by Anna Hazare in 2011 had its initial surge in the social media response. The traditional media came subsequently. Later on, the movement failed due to the internal design flaws of the umbrella group ‘India Against Corruption’. It’s a well known fact by now. There were many flip-flops on the commitment to the core issue of ‘corruption’. Add to it the personal bickering among the group members and display of personal agenda in the public and we had a perfect recipe for disaster. That too, reflected in the social media trends.

And the way support dried up for the movement reflects the slip was indeed a disaster. The massive social media support was the major reason to mobilize and organize youth who formed the initial core group of the neutral supporters of the movement when it began in April 2011. After the lull in-between, it peaked in August 2011 when we saw huge public outrage pouring over the arrest of Anna Hazare. The government ultimately had to come to the talking terms. Social media was the major communication platform for the organizers and their support groups. Remember the Anna Hazare video from inside the jail posted on YouTube! 

But after this high, it was a sharp downhill except the brief spike during the failed December fast of 2011. But it was more to do with the existing support base working overtime in the last-ditch effort to revive the movement. And the overall social media trends reflected that.



The above two analytical graphs for ‘Anna Hazare and ‘IAC’ Facebook pages and their presence in other new media are taken from a study (1) done for the ‘US Government Office of South Asia Policy’ by the ‘Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Madison’. I am not using the context of the study here but only taking some  representational data to support the viewpoint of this article. 

The activity data from these two graphs clearly show us how the social media activity related to the movement died down post-August 2011 fast. The analysis in the study is till February 2012 but there is nothing much to talk about the anti-corruption movement, Team Anna and ‘India Against Corruption’ in 2012 except the controversies related to them.

To continue..

(1) Analyzing Social Media Momentum-India’s 2011-12 Anticorruption Movement, Prepared for U.S. Government Office of South Asia Policy, Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Madison

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey - http://severallyalone.blogspot.com/ 

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