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Straight Post

Facebook, Maslow and Shakila

I faintly remember those engineering days of mine when Orkut was a rage. It was the new kid on the block. Facebook was unknown then. I don’t know about girls, but my friends in the boys hostel were less concerned about the “scraps” they received and were more interested in the profiles of anonymous “hot girls” they knew through their friends. That was when there wasn’t any “locking” system and anyone could peep into anyone’s profile. I guess that was the starting point of ‘virtual voyeurism’ that our generation is slowly coming to terms with . With the advent of Facebook, well, it is not a taboo anymore. When i see young “live in” couples sharing their “outing” pics openly with 500 odd friends on Facebook ,and India’s freshly graduated US MS/MBA studs shamelessly displaying their freshly brought new Audi, I can sense that there is some paradigm shift happening in human psychology, rather “Indian” psychology itself!.

Apart from all the gibberish “I can socialize, i can share , i can connect ” blah blaah… there is altogether a
different dimension as to why these virtual social platforms became such a huge hit among our species. In psychology there is a famous theory of Maslow which demonstrates the hierarchy of “human needs”. It’s in the shape of a pyramid, the base of which resembles the very raw human needs such as Food, shelter and shakila. We shall climb up the pyramid provided that we satisfy the present level that we are on. Facebook, Orkut, MySpace etc comes somewhere in between the pyramid as tools which can satisfy some of the very basic and dark human needs which were hibernating for a billion years.

The inventions of TV and Radio which were the only ‘social gadgets” available to our previous generation were not able to satisfy these needs. TV and Radio being “one to many” media, worked in favour of the rich, the powerful and the ‘stars’. The common man became a mere spectator. He lived their dreams, he saw them every time he looked at the mirror. He was never the “Hero”. He was never to be admired and he was never to be envied. But all these changed to some extent with platforms such as Orkut, YouTube etc. Facebook with its ‘personalized’ look took it to a different realm altogether.

There used to live a beautiful young girl who was in her teens beside my house, who used to occasionally visit my room to check her Facebook status (ahem..). Her face used to turn into a 1000 watt bulb whenever she checked her pending friend requests from anonymous boys, of course she never accepted them. It bought her a sense of pride, a sense of identity which nothing in this world could have given her. She suddenly felt important and wanted every time she opened her Facebook. She used to change her display pic after carefully shortlisting it from among hundreds of her pics in her personal album.

I don’t have any secret formula for happiness. But i know for sure what a young girl feels like whenever she posts a hot Pic of her along with her BF in the Facebook. I know what a successful young guy feels like whenever he posts a pic along with his Audi. You know what makes the girl happy?, the “look”! when she imagines the look on her girlfriends face whom she used to envy in her college days. You know what makes the guy happy?, the “look” on the faces of all his underachieved friends who used to mock him at school. This is what precisely made Facebook click and this is what precisely made twitter click. Whateverrr

To err is Human, to tweet is Divine!!!



About Straight Post

SP is all about freewill. I was once a revolutionary who lost his ideals in technology, a philosopher who lost his integrity in debugging and a poet who lost his soul in coding. SP is just the way I see the world. No hard feelings.

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