The advent of social media has revolutionized our outlook. We interact with friends whom we have not met for so many years. We can freely find readership for our opinions and ideas. Many business start ups of the valley have made it big through social media-a case in point being a food joint owner in Srinagar who expanded his business through social media.
However, the publicity quotient entailed in the social network has prompted many people to believe that it can be used to disseminate news as tell. So far so good, there is an equally notorious chunk of the never-do-wells who believe that false information can also be effectively disseminated through social media. Day in day out we read news about how a hundred kilogram heavy man lost half of his weight in just a fortnight or how a novice gym-goers were able to lift hundred kilograms in bench-press in just one month into weight lift practice.
In politics, the political workers use social media to score brownie points over their opponents. Every other day we read news which is then retracted. The news triggers an ethnic conflict within hours and consumes many lives before we are told it was fake news. Sometimes the women of prominence are subject to character assassination causing immeasurable loss to their reputation.
Stringent laws need to be enacted to prevent fake news from being spread through social media. Slander, character assassination and abuse have to be fended off and need of the hour is to check bulk messages spread through whatsApp. The cow vigilante across the Indian mainland has used WhatsAp platform to attack several people of a particular community.
We hope that no news is spread without filtration and government evolves with some kind of a gate keeping on social media as well. Social media is a wonderful tool; those who are using it for the ulterior purposes need to face the law.