1. Today’s era is the era of technology.
2. Technology is the cornerstone of everything today and there is no sphere of life that has not been touched by technology.
3. It is proliferating in the lives of people at a startling pace and one of the main reasons behind this phenomenon is the ease of availability and affordability of gadgets like smartphones which keep a person connected virtually to the entire world constantly.
4. One such technological platform that has enhanced the connectivity among people is the social media.
5. Today billions of people are using several popular social media platforms like Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram etc.
6. While these platforms have brought people closer and have made exchange of information really convenient, there are times when some unscrupulous elements of the society use these platforms for their own selfish motives by spreading slanderous and false information on these platforms.
7. One such incident is still fresh in my memory as I too nearly was allured by an incorrect piece of information which I received on one of my Whatsapp groups.
8. One of my friends forwarded a message which purportedly claimed that an MLA of our city had made some derogatory remarks about a particular religious community.
9. The message came with an image in which MLAs’ face was shown in a very aggressive mood and a text box was pasted near his face in which an unacceptable statement was written about that particular religious community.
10. The text box was pasted in a manner as if to portray that the MLA had spoken those words.
11. The message became viral and created a furor in our city.
12. Police immediately took control of the situation and started investigation into the matter.
13. The people of the community who were mentioned in that message were infuriated and called for the immediate arrest of the MLA.
14. The police ensured them that the law will take its course and if the MLA is found guilty he would be brought to the book.
15. The investigation started and the first thing that came out was that the image of the MLA in the message was taken 5 years back in one of his election rallies.
16. The MLA came out publicly and proved this fact and said that he would never do anything that would hurt the feelings of any community irrespective of their allegiance.
17. Further investigation revealed that the message was actually framed by a person who belonged to the opposition party and wanted to malign the image of the MLA who was gaining popularity because of his good deeds that he had done for our city.
18. That person confessed his transgression and apologized to the community defamed in the message.
19. This was a classic case of misuse of technology and how easy it has become to spread false information which can culminate in grave repercussions.
20. The onus is completely on us, the users of technology to ensure that we do not fall prey to such incorrect pieces of information which unfortunately are shared without any qualms.