The false social media wave

O

ne space which allows for easy and unrestricted express of opinions, is the social media platform. Numerous social media spaces most notably Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and WhatsApp have proved handy to whoever feels has something to share with the world.

With very few controls, or close to none, one is at liberty to spill everything that will satisfy the hunger lying in them. The traffic of opinions is responsible for the construction of many perceptions. Often these conclusions lack a clear measure of merit and justification. But in the end who cares.

Regardless of the realism that these messages hinge on, they still retain that power to effect a certain amount of believability among the populace. They can create Kings and Queens, winners and losers. Such is the power these spaces possess.

Among the followers, there is a certain section of individuals who feel incapable of making decisions on their own. They would always love to go with the flow of the majority. If the crowd is identifying with Mr. A, they will also align themselves with Mr. A.

Sometimes they win with the group and sometimes they lose with the group. No harm really in either. Life goes on. Those responsible for setting that particular agenda are never even held accountable for their role in the whole equation.

With the 2019 Tripartite Elections firmly on the horizon, things will also take an exciting turn. Everyone will not want to miss the opportunity to project the candidate they identify with as the best thing that can happen to Malawi. How easy they will make it to the finishing line and all that jazz.

It is an exciting moment for those who elect just to take a backseat and enjoy the flow. The battles provide a perfect pastime when one has some lazy hours to kill. Also the folly in some reasoning is a source for worry.

But what is more worrying is that those who are the loudest and the most active are those whose submissions lack any substance. But due to their being too active they gain prominence and they are rewarded with a huge following.

Knowing fully well that they command a huge following, they use every opportunity available to score a point. Whether it means twisting facts, trading misinformation, making serious omissions and allegations, they do not care.

Most of the country’s citizens have a lazy culture of not wanting to verify the aunthenticity of issues separately. It is so embedded in our DNA to the extent that these kingmakers easily pass as social media heroes.

They receive a message on WhatsApp without ascertaining whether it’s true or not, they send it to all their contacts. Such is the sorry state that our people have willingly become.

The ones who will show the required aggression will eventually run away with the blue ribbon. Not necessarily the ones who will send out the most sensible and appealing messages.

That is why it is paramount to exercise a good measure of vigilance and patience in electing to go with the tide as dictated by the social media spaces. Some of these waves, are anything but false. n

 

The author is a guest writer.

 

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