Divya Drishti and sasural genda phool actress Ridhiema Tiwari believes that social media has a huge impact on people’s lives and that it has a great potential for those with creative ideas. “Whether we like it or not, social media has a huge impact on our lives and our lifestyle. Most of us can’t even imagine a life without it. It has transformed the way we interact with one another. Thanks to the pandemic, we rely on social media for entertainment, gossip and even news. It’s the most convenient medium to stay connected and can be accommodated effortlessly as a part of a busy schedule,” she said.
Unfortunately, she said that it’s the most preferred medium for communication. “The live feature breaks barriers and fans now reach out to their favourites effortlessly. It’s possible to virtually attend events around the globe. On the serious side of things, live broadcasts and tweets have increased awareness and facilitated conversations about controversial topics. Social media is constantly updating itself and its fast pace is bringing about a global shift in a positive way,” she said.
People follow celebrities and emulate them, especially via social media so it is a huge responsibility, but everyone is not taking it seriously.
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“Yes, it’s true. Ardent fans are trying to emulate their favourite icons and it becomes our responsibility to maintain a decorum. However, the fixation isn’t new. Earlier the reach wasn’t so intimate, but now people get a full blown view into the lives of celebrities and influencers. For those who believe that social media is all real, they get lost and end up feeling unworthy and defeated trying to achieve the inevitable. Sadly, it doesn’t stop them from desiring a dreamy life for themselves too. But the fact is that social media is mostly all glossy and one sees more gorgeous shots of holidays, expensive dresses and perfect relationships. Rarely a celebrity or an influencer talks about his or her flaws or lows in life,” she said.
According to her, unrealistic lifestyles invite unhealthy comparisons and affect mental health. “Hence, celebs should always remember that they are constantly scrutinised and should be more mindful of their behaviour in entirety,” she suggested.
The number of followers has become an obsession with almost every person, and she finds it absolutely obnoxious. “That doesn’t define the person one is. Unfortunately, we now live in an age where our worth is determined by the number of likes and followers and great comments we get on our social media accounts. This has led to serious depression and increased anxiety levels in the majority of people addicted to social media.”
She thinks that the number of followers is taken as a symbol of self-esteem and most of us look for validation in the form of likes. “Unfortunately for some, it has also impacted the process of casting, including popular faces of celebs and influencers with maximum fan base or followers, on OTT platforms to gain publicity. Such projects fortunately have bombed and put some sense into taking the craft and the actor fraternity more seriously. Social media is a tool and we should never let it control our lives,” she said.
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The world of social media is fake, everyone says so but at the same time everyone wants attention on social media. Asked if she thinks it is a double standard, she said, “No. It’s just being human. Popular people need not be successful too. They are the ones desiring constant validation and lack self-esteem and self-worth the most. They are under constant scrutiny and are trolled heavily. The constant comparisons and pressure they levy on themselves is beyond imagination. Social media world is their way to stem out loneliness and live perfection. Their mysterious lives push them to embrace the temporary distraction.”
Social media has become an ego massaging tool and it is disturbing regular lives of actors as everyday they need to put up new content. “I agree, but one has to choose to stay out of it. Social media definitely has great potential for those with creative ideas. But one should never lose the fun part. I opt out of anything that lacks the fun element,” she said.
She chooses what comes naturally to her. “I have been consistent in posting on social media but I don’t fall into the trap of new content. On days when I don’t have it , I let it go,” said Ridhiema. According to her, trolls are attention seekers. “They are the miserable sick ones seeking temporary joy using derogatory and foul terms or nudity to upset popular faces. I pity them,” she said. As for dealing with trolling, she shared, “Initially I did respond out of rage and hurt, but that’s an entire world altogether. With time I learnt to ignore and block them. They still try my patience though.”