Once upon a time, there was an era when celebrities are pressured to be ‘picture perfect’. Being in the showbiz industry, as we all know, is both a magical blessing and a curse. You get to entertain people and pursue a passion, but the public seems to be always holding a mirror in front of you, for you to always look your best―whenever and wherever. Flaws are not accepted but ridiculed. Then now comes an era of technology where Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are topping the most used sites in the World Wide Web. With that, celebrities aren’t the only ones who maintain their image, but almost everyone turned out to be public figures.
I had a friend once that I get annoyingly tired with because of her complains about her body. She even hired me and others in our circle to be her ‘watchers’, so she won’t eat too much. That was fine, but never on the part when she compares herself to an international model she’s idolizing and following on Twitter and to almost every girl out there. To be frankly honest, her body is voluptuously sexy. She is amazing in her own way! I wonder when the time will come that all the people will realize that beauty has always been misdirected, even more today. On the other side, I’m not quite familiar on the men’s side regarding these things—if they also get insecure on what they see with their pals.
Moving on, attachment to social media resulting in stereotyping in physical appearance isn’t my only target here. I’m also dealing with having a typical lifestyle that’s deemed to be the ‘successful one’ or maybe the ‘happy one’. When you show you have it, people will comment that you have a ‘good life’. When you don’t, they will say your life is ordinary or sad. That is something to be worried about because today, even the way we live has to be under a certain standard. One mere example is the term we all know as ’travel goals’. I am very joyful to those having fun in their escapades in their newly visited places and other faraway tourist spots. I know this is insane, but there are really others who just go out to have photographs posted in their social media accounts. I’ve heard some saying, “Let’s go there so we can change our profile pictures! It will surely have many likes, and we’ll look like we’re having a great life!” Well, it’s not exactly like that, but it’s the thought. I think it’s acceptable if they’re coming from wanderlust or the desire for recreational activities, but wanting to do that just to have pictures to brag is something to consider. I also knew someone whom in a travel spree, took a lot of pictures for every 30 seconds and end up saying she feels like she didn’t enjoyed it. Well, at least, she did have a lot of her online friends envying her vacation. Fun moments were lost for the sake of photos for her Instagram feed.
The time we have now is the period of addiction. It’s not that easy to point fingers to one another because first, online communication is much easier than personal interactions. It’s supported by a psychological study which concluded that online communication doesn’t require cognitive or emotional involvement. Well, knowing us, humans, we settle for what’s convenient. Second, social media sites are really fun! There’s no doubt to that. It has a good side which I want to call the ‘paradise’. Without it, I wouldn’t be able to see and know what’s going on with my uncle who’s been supportive to me all along. He’s working in Japan. Also, my high school best friend is currently studying in the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. It’s hard to work out our schedules. Through social media, I can see what she’s up to. Also, it is known that I’m currently building my career as a writer/blogger, and I’m using the power of social media to promote my literary pieces and articles. I can say that without it, my career will seemed to be deprived of oxygen or of life.
Now, the ‘paradise’ co-exists with what I termed as the ‘warzone’. You see, the hypocrite side of social media is much bigger and stronger. We can say that almost 80% of what we see there are carefully selected to show only the highlights of one’s life. Who will ever show the downfalls, right? Remember my title, ‘HYPOCRISY OF SOCIAL MEDIA, BUT WHY YOU SHOULD NEVER QUIT IT’. Despite the negativity it imposes, you should never abandon it. It is depressing, yes. But to all who deactivated accounts and never came back, please go back. We need more of you. More people who are enlightened with what’s happening in these platforms. To those who are on the verge to leave because of the intoxicating pollution, don’t. There are what I would want to call as ‘fab rebels’ out there. Those who are speaking against the wrong will of the society presented through these outlets. I am proudly one of them, joining arts and humanities online groups. Through our artworks and literary pieces we stand against all the falseness our today’s society imposes not just online but also in real life.
If all people who sees through the veil will don’t do anything, social media will lose its hope. Spread authenticity to counteract the lies. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and all there is to name―all are hypocrites but you should never ever leave, please stay.