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Media Wildfires

The media is a vast place where whether it is a funny video, a controversial statement, or a shocking news story, the viral nature of social media platforms amplifies the spread of information, often with unintended consequences. While viral content can sometimes entertain and inform, it also has some harmful effects associated with the rampant spread of such content.


The media has helped spread awareness, amplify creativity, community building, and recognition. The “pawri ho rahi hay” girl, Dana Neer, rose from a content creator to actor, model, and influencer. Similarly the “chai wala” gained popularity amongst the mainstream media viewers and became a model within a couple of days. This way, media improves lives by providing recognition to otherwise underrepresented groups/ individuals.


Media also comes with the negativity of misinformation, clickbait culture, online harassment and cyberbullying. We have all heard the phrases; “kaampien taang rahi hain” and “bik gayi hai gormint”. Everything goes viral, be it a slip of the tongue or talking impulsively, from a politician or a random citizen. The harmful effects of media spread like wildfire. The woman who gave an anti-establishment interview got bullied for her remarks and became “meme content” in 2016.







During a follow-up interview with Samaa TV , the woman’s son informed that after her video went viral, their social life was ruined, it became difficult to find matches for his sisters, and even lead to the creation of safety issues for the woman.


Similarly many incidents have occurred where the interviewee has been bullied on social media platforms for their unfiltered comments/opinions/beliefs.


It is important to recognize the dual nature of viral content on social media, understanding its potential to inform, inspire, and connect, while also being cautious about the negative consequences it can have on individuals and society. Responsible journalism, closely monitoring media content before making it public is necessary for that matter.


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Thank you for bringing this up! I think we've all enjoyed memes very carelessly and not thought about the impact it would be having on the other person. To think that such an elderly woman like the 'big gayi hai gormint' would get bullied so extensively is just unimaginable. It's saddening how people use others for certain minutes of fame but forget the repercussions it will have on the other person involved. Hopefully we can move to a more responsible way of sharing content, without making the other person's life miserable.

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Thankyou for bringing this up! Misinformation is a significant concern in the age of viral content. With the clickbait culture and the rapid sharing of information, it is easy for false or misleading information to circulate widely. This can lead to misunderstandings, confusion, and even societal divisions. We had a presentation in class about North Korea and there was a new where the ex lover was murdered I think, and it was seen later that it was not accurate and she was alive. Misinformation like this can really impact how one perceives things and its extremely important that fact checking is done before publishing anything

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Aisha Aamir
Aisha Aamir
Jun 22, 2023

Thank you for bringing this up! It always left a sour taste in my mouth when every other viral clip that went around was simply due to the fact that people found it funny that people accidentally misspoke or couldn't speak fluently in a language that was not their first. After a while, these viral clips and the memes that entail them become stale and just border on bigotry. An example from the top of my head would be the "Grape" viral video and how people not only made fun of the host but also the little kids who were just enthusiastic in participating in an assembly activity. They ridiculed their speech so much and all of the clips were…

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Definitely made me think of how the media and internet has just become this cesspool of unfiltered thoughts that are just freely spewed. It's really important for these reporters to recognize this and take the twitter wildfires into account when they might affect a person's life indefinitely. Paparazzi too should fall under this as their work revolves around finding celebrities off guard and catching something that sells and even mutual associates or loved ones of the privileged elite are not free from the heinous internet drama. One that could tip the balance of their lives.

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thanks for raising this point. twitter wildfires can potentially ruin someone's social life as well as career. We need more responsible paparazzi/ journalism.

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That's a really important issue. I feel that in the context of viral content and our class discussions on media literacy, media literacy becomes even more important. The speed at which information spreads can often lead to misinformation or misinterpretation. As responsible consumers, we need to verify the information before sharing it, understand the potential implications of the content going viral, and consider the impact it could have on the individuals involved. But in most cases, we oursleves are very quick to consume and share such content - almost in a rush. With content like this, we should absorb the content's context aswell before sharing or engaging.


While social media has the power to inform, entertain, and connect us, i…

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i agree! we should focus more on spreading the accurate news and media connections rather than sharing someone's private life and their flaws. the media can be both helpful and disastrous with one press.

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