About a decade ago, when I became active on social media, social media used to be a safe haven; where I would pour my heart out never mind that I got a like or two (although when I look back, the posts were a bit silly; some of the things I wouldn’t dare post today). The reason I can’t post the same stuff I posted ten years ago is not because I have grown, no, it’s because of the vultures that have since come on social media in the form of ‘ghosts’, or even worse, the Facebook friends (people you trust to be your Facebook friends). Post one thing and next thing you are the laughingstock of the cyber world, whoever introduced screenshots never knew the implications of that function.
I felt for this lady in one of this Facebook groups I am in. I am sure based on the assumption that her close relatives or people who mattered in her life where not in the group, she freely posted her views on why she thought women cried on their wedding. Within five minutes, her comment was all over social media, never mind her plea for it to be removed. Now am thinking of the implications that has on her life, with a family like mine, you would be guaranteed of a family meeting lol. She had commented innocently in a place she thought she was safe without knowing the social media streets can never be trusted nowadays.
Then again, where do these cyber bullies come from, especially those that hide behind pseudonyms? I have heard some theory that when someone misses a chance of being or doing something when they are young, they try by all means to make up for it when they are older. Maybe, just maybe, that is the case with our cyber bullies, who where maybe bullied in their hey days, and have since had the opportunity to bash people on social media. All this is done in a bid to become popular, and for what, I do not know, maybe to be promoted to group admin, I wouldn’t know.
One can never be free to post a picture of their own home, because they may end up a meme with the caption ‘When the slay queen is at home’. Social media has made us feel ashamed of who we truly are, sharing a fake life on social media when our real lives are ‘not so fly’. We tend to forget that sometimes, although our backgrounds may not be all so fly, we might actually be better than the people who judge us out there. We have keyboard warriors who will say the first thing that comes to their mind, acting as if their lives are all so perfect yet when people dig in to those people’s lives they realise that they are no better than those they bully.
Some are those who’ve been heartbroken by a lady and they decide to bash every female socialite. Some are those who found out their relatives who used to be cross border traders selling ‘madhoiri’ sold more than ‘madhoiri’ and so they decide to tell the world that every cross border had some extra demeaning means of making money. Most of us are those who judge the celebrities’ lives. Why does he have so many kids? Why hasn’t he bought a house at his age? Why did he donate only that and not more? We forget that these celebrities are no more human than us. So what if they have so many kids, did they ask for food from you to fend for their children? So what if he doesn’t have a house at his age, do you know what he has had to go through for him to get to that age never mind the state of our economy? So what if he carried a camera to donate food, what have you donated yourself to anyone?
We should remember, when we are on social media, we are the same people, we still are human beings. Social media has made people proud of what they should be ashamed of. We have lost our humanity all in the bid to become popular on social media. Ever take a moment to think before your post? How would I feel if this comment were directed to me? How would I feel if this were my mother who’s being referred to as the supposed ‘madhoiri’ cross border’? Let us not resolve our low self esteem issues by being the cyber-bullies. Most of these social media posts have broken hearts, caused depression, broken marriages and ruined friendships. If we could focus on the good of social media, we would all change lives.