Cheaper Internet: Social-networking & Streaming Apps, the only outcomes?

Cheaper Internet: Social-networking & Streaming Apps, the only outcomes?

Team MM | Nov 18, 2019

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Mridul Maheshwari pens down his thoughts on technology in this issue of Citizen Journalist.  

Technology work on some basic principles and the one which is of paramount importance is to make things easier. In this progressing world, which is slowly being taken over by technology, Internet is becoming its second name. When it comes to its accessibility, cost of the internet comes into play. Cheaper the internet would be, more accessible it will become. All these online apps and websites that are used today to create and influence the dynamics of virtual life, has a great influence on one’s mind. And this creation comes at a cost. Cost defines the frequency with which a user will use an app or website. We are now using a lot or better say wasting a lot. As per a recent report published by TRAI shows that Indians are leading even among major developed countries like USA, UK & Singapore, using 8GB wireless data per month per head. 

Let’s consider social media first. Well, all the social-networking platforms were designed and planned to ease communication mainly so that more and more people can stay connected and a lot of information can be exchanged. The causality like they say “necessity is the mother of invention”, was a necessity to make it simple as it can be. A platform could be created and redefine telecommunications, basically where people can feel like meeting someone realtime, or have a real-life virtual experience of interacting, exchanging ideas in the form of photos and videos or what we call multimedia. Hence, information can work as visuals & can be depicted. The second-most important element which makes it worthful is its use as a company tool. With this new junction for spreading information, one thing was clear even at its inception that it would be used for advertising and the same happened. Now, it is an important platform for all sort of advertising to attract people towards a product and sell it. Either it is YouTube, Facebook or Instagram, advertising has contributed a lot to make these sites print money and now they are really printing so. Ways can be different though.

Initially, people mainly got fascinated with the social networking platform because it provided a different and a better way to communicate with others in all fascination, i.e. by chat, voice messages and video. Prior to this, there were many problems for conveying messages, transferring documents & other work-related items. A practical example to support this argument is, let say design for a new building prepared by an architect, can be easily placed before the client by sending it using any of the social networking platforms. This won’t take more than seconds, while previously the situation was, they have to use postal service which obviously takes time. Folks in the corporate sector are connected to other officials every second at a stretch because it has upgraded the two-way communication. We can say that this is the best possible platform to remain updated with the updates!

There’s another clause which adds a relevant aspect about this social-networking world is 'just spending so-called quality time'. This is the reason why the negative aspect of social-networking also remains highlighted anytime. It’s another reason why it has overtaken lives who have gone so much into it. It even connects you with the person sitting at antipodes with you for which people spend their time chatting with the guy whom they might as well have not met, this opportunity too sometimes leads to some major conflicts. It’s a good place to talk with someone of the opposite gender, as it’s safe & basically no one’s going to judge you because it comes with privacy terms. It’s a good place to hang out without going out anywhere because everyone is posting almost everything about themselves and the places they visit, basically exposing a window to their own life to the outer world. Social websites now have also become the best place for stalking, as no one can catch you while you are stalking and probably the person whom you are stalking can’t see you stalking him/her. Socio-account is becoming the best midway that helps you to explore and sometimes exploit, providing all the information that has been shared publicly.

The issue of internet cost & speed came 10-12 years ago in the US. So, they are more familiar with the situation and have suffered or maybe survived this. There mightn’t be many Facebook accounts and YouTube-ing before the time but this did really exploit American youth which let them astray and out of employment.  While unemployment among the native Americans was on high, and they believed Indians and Chinese were taking in high profile jobs, Donald Trump w on the presidential elections in 2016 on an agenda to provide their youth with jobs at home and not prefer foreigners. He promised that he will let Americans get their job back. As a college student, I take a glance at all this with a zoom-in view. We definitely get better net speed at low cost. And I see individuals some of who have beautiful minds but are exploiting themselves by wasting their time surfing, playing PUBG, watching YouTube etc or rather getting onto the clutches of futile addiction.

Apart from all this, it's not like that this online world hasn’t given anything to us. Of course, it hasn’t much fluctuated from its basic idea of making lives easier. If we take the example of YouTube, watching a video is a fascinating activity and that’s why it reaches a greater extent. YouTube is used by the person of any age group, anywhere and anytime we need it for. Watching something worthy, maybe something entertaining which all adds up to memory and is the simplest way for a person of any generation to understand things. All these streaming apps work simply for any individual. Until the time, we have a command or control over the technology there’s no problem. The problem occurs when the time limits are crossed. There are features which even allows keeping track of time spent on things and basically, these things are made for user welfare only. So, everything’s fine unless we don’t let them become futility.

Online Ecosystem is a new complete ecosystem altogether. And, we all are parts of it in discrete ways. Actually, there are some species who are now living totally into it. There was a time when people used to meet others, interact with others socially and live in reality. These things look a bit nostalgic now, as nowadays people do all these things on social networking sites or other messaging applications. There was a marvellous impact, impression and feeling of how we basically used to do all this in prior times with nowadays so-called “Classic Means”. These Classic Means mainly involve telephonic communication, letters and hand notes. These I means have totally been taken over by social networking platforms which I feel, in some ways is not cool. People have let themselves involved in many filthy activities in this online world which they weren’t doing before its introduction in our lives. A totally new ecosystem has been developed where WhatsApp, YouTube, Facebook & Instagram have taken over and not mutually exclusive but one should never forget that this technology was developed to reduce time and make things easy, not to spend all day hanging out in this.

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