Social Media Activism and Kerala Culture
First there was newspaper, and then came television. And now it’s the advent of the internet. Granted it has been over two decades since its arrival, but its potential was not realized until about 2005, when the youngsters began to revel in the wonders of social media. Orkut, Facebook, Google Plus, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr and WhatsApp are a few social media websites and mobile applications that have managed to captivate a large number of followers.
Such sites and applications have also been of use in getting the message out there. In earlier days the main method of involving a large audience in a particular event was to take an advertisement in a newspaper. But in the present tech-savvy world of ours, a simple e-vite is enough to bring together a massive crowd. By putting up an event in Facebook, one could easily pull together enough spectators to make any affair a success.
In present Kerala, a major movement is taking place among the online community in Facebook, WhatsApp, etc. Social media activism has become a substantial part of the average Malayalis day-to-day life. Troll pages on Facebook like Troll Malayalam, International Chalu Union-ICU, Troll Republic-TR, etc are responsible for bringing to its followers the many news stories that our regular daily newspapers recoil from. These troll creators or trollans as they are known in our society are mostly youngsters who are either in college or are in the pursuit of a job. Labelled jobless by the society whose faults they bring to light, these trollans work using Photoshop or other image editors with no reward in sight. Through this paper, I plan to shed light on how social media activism works in the present Kerala society and how our society regards it by focusing on a few instances of Facebook activism.
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