DailyPost 1088 


Don’t shoot the messenger has been proverbial since times immemorial. The essence being that the message was of critical value and hence messenger is inconsequential. Wasting time on the messenger or engaging him in a battle does not serve any purpose. Fast forward to the Digital Age, more so the social media age where the messenger has been gaining from strength to strength on the all pervasive digital medium created for official work, communication, entertainment and now subsumed in the cacophony of a weird web of social interactions.

These are the behemoth messengers of the day. Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and whole of their ilk, which claim  maximum amount of human time on frivolous social interaction, make them addictive, premeditated and making billions of dollars and immense clout and power in the process. Ironically, there is no information. At no time in history was the messenger custodian of the message. Messengers from the time of yore were not supposed to see the message, whatever may be the medium. Reading the message was blasphemy and the messenger would lose his job and be castigated out of the official system.

The messenger here not only reads the messages, he has become the de-facto owner of the message, in what can be termed as behemoth databases. 100 huge data centers control the world and quite a sizeable part of the storage goes for the social media stuff. Even other communications faces the same fate. The auto complete in Google mail introduced recently can given you a fair idea of the depths we have gone too.

The beauty of the whole exercise that you might not get your information if it’s against their company’s policies. That is one nice way of telling you that you will not get your own data. Stripped of data at their whims and fancies is the sine quo non of our social media digital media existence. The usage of data for crash commercialisation is their constituency, done unashamedly. Cambridge Anlytica is the norm not an exception.


Sanjay Sahay

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