Stories about online

My quest to find Mr Right online

For the last couple of years my mother has been asking me the same questions: “Have you met someone?” “When will you start looking?” “Are you getting older each day or younger? (Umer ja rahe hai k aa rahe hai?)” The worst is when she tells me that if I don’t find someone for myself, she will do it for me. An image of Mr Kohli from Bride and Prejudice pops into my head after this declaration (shudder). You might think that I am talking about the biggest issue in Pakistan. But no, this is not about Memogate or about Zardari. This issue is ...

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Deconstructing the PTI troll

Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) is the talk of the town. Naysayers have several objections – some which are fair, some not quite. One particular complaint, however, is a unique piece of criticism leveled against the party: that of the PTI troll, someone we all know and despise. When criticising the PTI on public forums, especially Twitter, a commenter is often subjected to harsh language and offensive speech by ‘supporters’ of the party. Instead of presenting arguments against criticism, these trolls subject the critic to intense cyber abuse. While I agree that this behaviour is not in the party’s interests, criticising the ...

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Dr Aamir Liaquat’s show continues…on Twitter

After being hounded by a viral video controversy, it seems our esteemed Dr Aamir Liaquat has decided to take the fight against his good name online, via Twitter. Needless to say, for some of us, this has been an eye-opening, and somewhat refreshing experience compared to the Doctor’s rather lengthy TV series. Welcome to a show far removed from TV, as the brevity of Twitter updates forced the good Doctor to skip his usual elegant mannerisms. No more fluff, Dr Aamir Liaquat played hardball online, proving that he really knows how to segment and cater to different audiences (and varying levels ...

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Do Facebook friendships mean anything at all?

OK, let’s accept it. We are all addicted to social networking sites, especially Facebook, in one way or another. Social networking has not only altered the way we live, it has also changed our relationships and interactions with each other. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Foursquare, Yahoo 360 and many other social networking sites are the projectors of our self image and define our relationships. The pages we ‘like’, the groups we join, our activities and interests, the thoughts we choose to share on Facebook – all work to make us a part of a subculture that is still in its infancy, ...

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Are narcissists bringing social media down?

A great deal is expected from social media here in Pakistan. We are the younger generation’s hope and the older one’s handing-over brigade. We are supposed to act as a check and balance for not only political corruption, but for mainstream media which most of us regard as an out-of-control dinosaur. We are called saviors but I think we may need a little bit of saving from our own selves. This weekend was a busy one for the social media savvy here in Karachi. On Friday, there was Google MapUp held at the Institute of Business Administration (IBA) which proved to be ...

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I love you, but you can’t have my password

I recently read a blog post about sharing personal e-mail accounts with your partners or spouse. The blog said about 33 per cent of women and 30 per cent of men share their online information with their partners. It also said that among unmarried couples, 10 per cent of the time, this led to a discovery of their partner’s infidelity. The figure was lower for married couples – about three per cent. The identity theft expert who gave these stats, Robert Siciliano, went on to warn that this figure was among those who had admitted to account sharing and discovering the infidelity ...

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Cricket fever goes digital!

It’s finally here! What we’ve all been waiting for — the ICC World Cup 2011. The tournament has brought with it a month of cricket madness. But what happens to the dedicated cricket fan when, God forbid, you miss an important match? The world wide web may have a solution. While you wait for match highlights on TV, you can also obtain a complete low down of what went on during a match through numerous cricket websites. You can view a ball-by-ball commentary of the matches, get updates on the latest news in the world of cricket, as well as ...

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Why pay for online information?

Shortly after the internet revolution, newspapers and magazines were publishing their articles and news online for readers and it was not long before it was necessary for them to have online editions. Publications started competing for more website visitors resulting in the emergence of the e-paper which put a scanned version of the publication online for free viewing. It did not take long for people to become dependent on these free e-papers and many readers cancelled their subscriptions of the print edition. As revenues fell, publishers were left scratching their heads. Had they made a mistake by going online? However, they could not ...

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Mubarak’s departure: Triumph of the citizen

Three Fridays, eighteen days. There is no greater testament to the power of people, ordinary people that is, than what the Egyptians have achieved yesterday. Overthrowing Mubarak is historical, not just for the overthrowing of a deeply entrenched dictator, but because the revolution straddles both, the present and the future of the idea of social aggregation. Present in its ability to rid a society of autocracy and futuristic in its ability to do so without revolutionary leaders, this, and the Tunisian revolution, has shown the world that age-old notion of heroes rescuing troubled damsels in distress is just that – ...

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Scandalous Islamabad: Facebook’s gossip vultures

On an idle Sunday afternoon spent eating pizza and chatting with my sisters-in-law, I was introduced to ‘Scandalous Islamabad’. In case you don’t know what it is, ‘Scandalous Islamabad’ is a Facebook group inspired by American TV show Gossip Girl (remember the mysterious “And who am I? That’s one secret I’ll never tell. You know you love me xoxo Gossip Girl?”) Currently, this Facebook group has a following of almost 5,000 people. The grapevine is active The group that was created in January this year keeps disappearing and reappearing. Apparently, this is because they got hacked. There is a post on their ...

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