Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Panic Attack

I am as vocal as any Indian Citizen worried about reservations and their impact on me, my future propects and my future kids' prospects but am a little worried about what we are doing..
I am not talking about the students taking to the streets and protesting and verbalizing what we all think of the reservations..
I'm talking about the armchair-activists across the country.. who through emails, SMSes and online petitions are adding their two-penny bit to the protest..
I got
  • 8 SMSes about how 94 doctors collapsed while on a 96-hour hunger strike without any media coverage a la Emergency
  • 5 messages asking me to sign/forward some petition to the President/Prime Minister/Arjun Singh/Sonia Gandhi protesting the quota idea - whihc btw, I did but who is sending this petiton where and how?
  • 6 offliners about how some doctor in AIIMS has died again minus media coverage

Hold on a sec! NDTV just ran a segment last night on how all of the above are hoaxes? Did anyone catch it? Is it even true?

Conspiracy theory ki jai

Pl let's confirm where this news is coming from before we spread it like wildfire among friends - yes, even if we do have free sms plans ;) I got an SMS from a journalist friend but I still didn't forward it 'cos frankly I don't see why media is not being allowed to cover it.. Hell, I don't know how or who is stopping them.. In today's age of masal news, this is just the kind of news, NDTV/Aajtak/Zee/CNBC is looking for to boost ratings and rake in advertising money..

I know many of us feel frustrated that we cannot do out bit in this reservation uproar (job/location/willpower) but that doesn't make us any less responsible for it..

Why can't we check facts before forwarding this kind of news which when its proven false just hurts our case and casts doubts in peoples' (read elders) minds about what our generation is trying to prove.. In fact, am pretty sure the doctors on strike feel frustrated that we guys can't do anything more than pass on unverifiable news.. Let's not forget that news sent through SMSes and email and orkut is considered more credible 'cos it came from the guy/girl you partied in college with.

Guess what? I'm forwarding this link to everyone I know..

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