Sunday, January 27, 2013

Just Like This

The continuous inroad of social networking sites into our lives is an undeniable fact. The fact that is repeatedly reminded by the thumb finger's appearance in our everyday-visited webpages. And that is the fact that I started to ponder upon sometime back.

Just like it is hard to put a human intelligence in a grading system, it is equally hard to uni-directionally channel all the human emotions to a like. Not love, not hate, not ignore but, like. Wait, of course there is an ignore. When a visitor leaves this blog space without a comment, without a google+ click and without a facebook like, it is just plain old ignore. Though ignore cannot be explicitly stated, you can ignore. That makes the grading between two. You are supposed to either like or ignore an opinion.

There must be a hideous conspiracy going on behind this, or so I would like to imagine, in order to continue this piece.

It must be very expensive to digitally store the likes. Imagine all the likes you have liked till now and all those requiring a bit of storage in servers around the world. That must be accessible at your will within a blink of an eye as soon as you open your page. That must be stored throughout the history of social networks, throughout the life of an average netizen. According to a recent report, a prominent social networking site has 584 million active users each day (check it here for yourself and don't chuckle that the pioneer of web-service is now just providing this fact instead of attracting that many active users). Assuming each active user puts 10 likes per day, we have approximately 6 billion likes accumulating every day, requiring roughly 6 gigabit storage. Sure, it is peanuts to add that storage for a internet behemoth. But, to do that everyday, for every active user for approximately 50 years ? Is this the reason, the top honchos do not bother to fine-grain the emotions ? We have the returning users anyway ? Who cares if one vents the frustration of not being able to superlike one particular blog entry ?

Let me assume the reason to be even deeper. Someone (like a social network evangelist) wants us to be happy when we are there. And if you just restrict the choice to liking, you end up with a justice delivered and remain happy. One hardly bothers to think, react and comment - when the simple option of liking is provided. The likes remain there and you always return with a happy mood. No matter even if most heinous crimes are reported. You find a protest and like it. You hide your dislike by discovering a like for the opposite.

And there, I think, lurks the opportunity for the next wave of social networking. Which dares to call a spade a spade and provides a grim, realistic view of reality.


Don't bother. Just tirelessly like this article like the merry girls skipping throughout the evergreen song in a fantasy world.

And yes, I drew the thumb above.

No comments:

Post a Comment