“The social networking sites in Nepal have more good stories to tell than the bad stories. It is the best vehicle to network and find your lost friends. For some, it has been a good source to find news. But, the best thing about social networking sites is that it is increasing Nepali internet users.”
Social networking and mi cro-blogging sites are getting quite popular among Nepalis in recent time. But, even the techno savvy people have taken the road to deactivate their Facebook accounts. A friend of mine had entered into the social networking sites in the early days. Yet, he has intends to deactivate his Facebook account all because one of his friends started flirting with his close girl friend. The person became a friend via the Facebook. But, the girl didn’t know that the two were friends. Eventually, the bad guy started giving unnecessary calls and troubled her. My friend realized the incident. He found out that the guy got the information and contact details from the Facebook site. That intrusion made him think of quitting the social network site.
He is not alone in thinking whether one should continue or deactivate the account. There are hundreds of people who are finding social networking sites time-consuming and unsocial, because it makes one addictive and sometimes uneasy because of the unwanted materials posted on the wall. Their argument is social networking sites are turning humans into machines, and they have lost the art of communication even with a person close to him/her. Others argue about privacy. Their claim is: nothing is private after one is on Facebook. Some find the pictures and statements in social networking sites offending. These are the reasons for them to quit the internet-based network.
Some of my friends had left ‘HI5’, a social network, years ago after they found that explicit pictures were posted in their account. After my friend shared the incident with his colleagues, they deleted unfamiliar people from the friend’s list.
Another scary incident stook place in October. A mother in Florida was charged of killing her child for interrupting her while on Facebook game. This is an extreme case of Facebook addiction. After this incident, many people who are not open to social networking sites have started criticizing social networking sites.
With these unsavoury incidents, extra attention must be given while using social networking sites. Privacy setting of Facebook and other social networking sites should be customized as there are different privacy levels in social networking sites. For example, Facebook in its privacy settings offers photo and other information visible to public.
However, it is also possible to make information private only to friends of friend and to friends only. But, most of us hardly use such settings.
In Nepal it’s common to add people as friends even if you are not acquainted with them. Boys are very much interested in adding as many girls as possible as their friends and vice versa.
So, one has to be very careful in choosing a friend, just being careful is enough to avoid most of the problems in life. One, however, has to realise that we cannot deny the social networks instead they must be utilised to the best possible extent. They are the best platforms to brand any item or event for Nepali entrepreneurs or event managers.
An important thing that has happened in the few years is that the social networking sites have got recognition from the government, embassies and courts. Different businesses, media, artists, celebrities and anyone famous are on social networks and we can find their official account.
Even judges of Nepal are on social networks. Judges from the Supreme Court, appellate to district courts are found using social networking sites. Judges of Surpreme Court Damodar Prashad Sharma, Girish Chandra Lal, Appellate Court Judges Shivraj Adhikari, Kishor Silwal, Neeta Gautam Dixit and other are easily available on Facebook. They communicate good thoughts requesting all other friends to follow the law and transparency.
They say that they are using Facebook to get connected with their friends and family. They have even posted pictures of Dashain and some other personal events.
They say they use social networks without violating the code of their profession. The Supreme Court has formed a committee to investigate how the court can use the new media and social networks for the betterment of people and the court, according to its officials. Even the court in the Phillpines has opened an official Facebook account.
Moreover, some time back, a judge in UK allowed the use of Twitter, a micro blogging site, inside the court.
The social networking sites in Nepal have more good stories to tell than the bad stories. It is the best vehicle to network and find your lost friends. For some, it has been a good source to find news. But, the best thing about social networking sites is that it is increasing Nepali internet users. In a developing country like Nepal, people are habituated to using computers and internet to interact with friends and families. Kishor Silwal, judge of Pokhara Appellate court, who is now in Kathmandu, says that, “old people are even habituated to use Facebook, sooner or later they will use other programs as well”. As per available data, there are around 700,000 Nepali Facebook users, which speaks a lot for being internet savvy in Nepal. They are in touch with the world clicking the keyboard.
Orginally published on: http://www.epaper.thehimalayantimes.com/HT/HT/2011/01/28/ArticleHtmls/28_01_2011_008_005.shtml?Mode=0 (Jan 28, 2011)