Through the looking glass

Social networks bring the world together. Everyone is on Facebook, Orkut, Google+ and what not. It has greatly shrunken the world around us and brought us even closer to the people we know (and people we would also never like to know as well). News travels faster in social networks. Brands have started advertising their products through them. Interestingly, the social networks have also given birth to something unprecedented. It is the phenomenon where people are made to don a persona. I call it the “Online Persona”. 
Social networks have pulled the average man from his cozy little surroundings and blatantly exhibited him for all world to see. No one wants to look like a failure in front of their friends, co-workers or relatives. So we tend to adopt this very successful, passionate, deep-thinking or even funny persona of ourselves. We share photos, statuses and everything to exhibit a glorified version of our otherwise mundane and simple lives. 

This online persona is seen everywhere. Starting from guys who are so shy and couldn’t even utter a single word in front of a girl becoming this funny, smart alec when talking to a girl in chat, silent and dumb looking people sharing news and status updates about the current political scenario of the country, or even really nasty, always making people feeling small kind of people coming across as kind and nice. There is also a flip side to this. People who are really fun, entertaining and smart often do seem arrogant, dumb and really annoying through their social network interactions. This is because of the pressure to still be popular and that sometimes goes horribly wrong for them. 
Online personas are not only exhibited through photos or status updates alone. Even the smaller things like a good and edited profile picture shows how we have no choice but to adopt a persona.
Social networks are the looking glass of today’s society. Every one wants their reflection to be something they aspire to be. It offers a stage for all us actors to act and we all get to choose the character we play. Of course some of us are better actors than others….
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