My dear wife asked me to write a guest article on her excellent blog. “On what”, I asked.. my writing skills not exactly being legendary. “Oh, on something you are very familiar with”. That was a very enlightening answer from my chandni and roshni rolled into one. Apart from my job, I spend all my time with her and our adorable daughter. And I zealously guard our privacy so would not write about those hours for sure! So my job? Can’t do that either. I am also very familiar with my own handsome visage but I doubt people would be interested in reading about how well the mirror responds every single day to “Mirror Mirror on the wall”. I mean, heck, we are in an age where narcissism is frowned upon never mind the billion of self-photos uploaded on facebook by the masses and the classes. Or to paraphrase a famous son-in-law with a penchant for fruity descriptions of the hoi polloi, "by every aam aadmi (and badnaam aadmi) in Ban Anna republics". Well, hey hey hey, there is something in that! How about writing on technology and the transparency it is creating?
So here we go! This is her blog, I am just "guest writing". Trust me, its not her who is ghost writing my guest writing :-)
A fellow writer (a much more famous and richer one of course - I gave him a headstart) philosophized that the “The World is Flat” a few years ago. I will amend that to “The World is in a Flat (Screen)”. Thanks to social media and smart devices, we have the capacity to know everything about anything that is going on in anyone’s life. Where was John Doe one hour ago? Check facebook – I mean what kind of an unsocial person would not have uploaded what he or she was doing every minute of his or her life? Where was Mary Jane last night? Check out the photos from the resto-pub last night – and you thought she didn’t drink? The pose in that picture on her BFFs wall post where she is trying to walk on her hands while balancing a stool on her stilettos is clearly not something I have ever attempted as a teetotaler. We know which food Geeta and her pretty neighbor Rita like, which spa they go to, which brands they want to get their hands on – everything is on their “Likes”.
There is a clear list of people who will benefit from this explosion of transparency......am listing here in order of the “fear factor”…
1. Spouses : Never mind what your spouse said about the business dinner last night. Just check her or his colleagues and friends facebook pages. Whoa! That business dinner had just 3 people? She and her two “hungry wolf” (and I am not referring to the food) colleagues? Ah yes, people tend to squeeze in a lot closer while taking those ”hey, we were here and had a good time” snaps. Nothing wrong in their intentions, the camera angle is not good enough! And, by the way, check the text messages. Almost everything has closure on text nowadays. One cannot be having dinner without a “hey thanks, lets meet tomorrow to conclude that discussion on the deal”. So if you find a “hey, had a lovely time, lets do this again” from a Tina for your Tony – well, someone has been mixing pleasure with business.
2. Parents: I know your kids will never accept your invites to be friends on facebook. But its ok, they will accept friends requests from complete strangers. So think of a cool 21st century name and you would be tracking all their moves in no time. Yes, the hostel gates do close at 10pm. So the camera times showing 2am on the facebook picture taken outside the nightclub must be wrong. Of course! Not just facebook, you could easily see on your own computer what your child is interested in. What were you doing on the computer so late, son? Research for my assignment dad! Yep, that ties in wonderfully with the internet history recorded on the browser which shows 1 hour each spent on “interesting” websites.
3. The tax man! Hey, how on earth do you spend 10 times what you earn on on travel, shopping and eating out? "Lucci, yeh Gucci kaise khareeda?" Yes, Lucci here will rhyme with Gucci, and not be pronounced as Lucy. What? Mind my language? Take out all the F words from your facebook posts first (Yes, Fendi and Ferragamo too!), Rascala! (It IS Rajnikanth's birthday today ain't it)
4. Detectives, Future spouses, future in-laws, future outlaws (and current ones), employers….this list can go and on and I can fill in reams of digital space – but hey – you got the message - right? Besides, a Blog cannot be too long – or so I understand.
So let me come straight to the point –
Technology has the power to keep us honest, because it does not give us room to lie. Because technology makes everything and everyone so easy and simple to track. Remember your (Digital) footprints are everywhere!
The "EmJay" in "AarCeeEmJay".