Numbers don’t matter… Lives do…

A Youtube stunt went awfully wrong last week when a woman shot her husband dead accidentally in the US. The act was videoed as it was intended to be a prank in order to garner more hits on Youtube.

Even though the incident does not have anything to do with Sri Lanka, it does trigger many questions over the extent to which people would go to in order to get something they want.

In this case, it was online fame through number of hits. Internet has loads of crazy videos that involve life threatening moves. Some end up in the category of ‘amazing videos’ as the stunts are successful. The unsuccessful ones end up in the ‘funny videos’ category. But in most cases, for those in the video, it’s not funny at all.

But, people watch them. Whether they like it or not is immaterial. The main thing is to make sure that they click on the link.

That’s the sad truth. We do live in a world where quantity matters. The success of an online article or a story is evaluated on the number of hits that it had got.

The quality of the content of the article, in most cases, comes secondary. This is most unfortunate, but still, is reality.

Numbers are important. We were taught to obtain good grades and good marks in examinations and were ranked accordingly. These instilled in us that numbers reflect the level of success.

However, we were taught to earn those marks through hard work and discipline, not by copying. We live in a world where people want instant results, and when they don’t, they lose patience.

We do live in a competitive environment. It is a rat race. But one should remember not everyone’s life is the same. We do not live the life of another. Each person has his or her own challenges and therefore, should live the lives accordingly.

There were honest efforts that gained unexpected popularity on the internet. The perfect example is the success story of the ‘Kolaveri’ song. Its composer, Anirudh became an overnight sensation unexpectedly.

We have come across videos of risky stunts, but most of them are performed by professionals who have trained themselves.

People today are heavily influenced by the internet. The impact of social media is such that everything seems to be true and doable.

Yes. One must go towards the impossible, but by taking calculated risks.

Published in the Nation on July 1, 2017


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