This craze began with Facebook. It helped us chat, find friends, send pics and do so much more — all for free. Being a 90s kid, who also lived through paid messages and expensive phone calls, Facebook was the best thing that could have happened.
Well, that was only till WhatsApp came around. WhatsApp took over our generation and also the generations older and younger to us. But even that popularity was short-lived. Next up, was Instagram with real images and real stories — skip to present and even that’s all about reels, sometimes more dramatic than real life.
Like that was not enough to drive a whole generation snap crazy… along came Snapchat with its anonymity and opened up a whole new world for hormonally-driven teenagers — who could now behave as they wanted to online, no strings attached.
Some of these apps have helped us for sure. I will not deny how useful apps like Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp are. They have given us so many options. The same ‘us’ who used to be forced to watch Doordarshan (as there was nothing else on TV), today quite nonchalantly ‘Netflix and Chill!’ We order food online from Swiggy and Zomato with such natural ease; one would assume we’ve been doing this since we were born. And the pandemic has only increased our dependence on these apps.
Love has also become easier, no? For every Tinder and Bumble, there’s a Grindr or Scruff or Pink Sofa to cater to more specific needs. Even matrimonial sites now have ‘matching’ apps! And today, you name it and there’s an app for it and even if there isn’t, I’m sure someone will create one soon enough.
But where is all of this leading to? I wonder if these apps are controlling us or are we really in control of them and using them for our benefit. I guess, this question cannot be answered too easily — but it should surely get us thinking. Are we really in control of our social media lives, anymore? Or are these apps controlling us?