Art of writing and speaking was reserved for the very few who could take diplomatic stands on and off stage. Those were the talents of the bygone era. The era of the bombastic rhetoric. New age media of internet and social marketing has forced many activists to go online. This has gone to such realistic level that in UP BJP had reportedly wanted a minimum number of likes for potential candidates to get a ticket.
The game of social activism had taken a leap from there, at least for the many potential activists. This lone writing of blog in a non-main stream channel of networking. Yes, bloggers do network in a different way than social networking platforms like twitter. But the game again is to put your content in a static form, for memory and for easy retrieval compared to the real time dynamic nature of social media where the next second is not yours. Yes, with considerable number of friends and group to follow, it is not more than a second that captures the attention, if at all, of a casual reader, in social platform.And a lone writing in a blog may not garner quick, or long followers. But it is still there, as a personal satisfaction, for the keyboard samurai to look back and cite as achievement. There is no guarantee that the fighter gets the fame in his lifetime. And like the many real soldiers who stand for their homeland and defend it with pride and their life, the lone keyboard warrior cannot come anywhere near in even a passing reference for the real life defenders. The effort of a keyboard warrior may then be diverted to capture the moods and comments of his “friends” and “followers”. This is possible lest these women and men and others are a tad inclined to oblige themselves in the form of likes, follow and comments. The best of social media activity of a modern day couple is well written in the lyrics of “Selfie – Pulla” by Madhan Karky Vairamuthu
By this time you would have understood the feelings of a keyboard warrior who has nothing but the keyboard and Google search to help him locate the necessary raw materials. This is unlike the traditional activists who have torn their footwear for their passion for their activism. Technological advancement in the form of speech recognition and better keyboard do not let the keyboard warrior’s keyboard to look like that of a well seasoned politician or social worker. Blame it on technology, but one definite indication of the keyboard warrior is that his seat is always hot! Due to continuous sitting and typing. If the temperature is a good indicating parameter of a seasoned keyboard warrior, why not take it at face value. Yes, this is forced upon the reader and the unexpected reader. But that is a risk befitting a champion. There may be losses of “friends” and “followers”. But it is said by Facebook that “Followers are temporary, friends are forever” because the network is build on the basic habit of fellow humans, to know and comment, often bad comments, on what others did or what they ought to. It is the unforgiving human nature. This no one can control.
As an experiment , may be for real, facebook started the keyboard warrior program where people could change their images to support France. This was a technological jump for the usual keyboard warrior, often going by fake names to support his cause, because this just involves few clicks. This gave rise the Click-warriors, later extended to Touch-warriors and so on and so forth, based on the kind of sensing mechanism that they used their social networks with. Now there were new worlds created due to this. This included the first world of touch-warriors and touch-citizens, second-world of click-warriors and click citizen, third world of keyboard warriors and keyboard citizens and the dark fourth world were the net speed is less than 1Gbps, a fifth world that had bare minimum of what is called as civilization at 256Kbps and the dark unknown world without internet. This was another layer of abstract classification of human beings but not yet devastating enough to cause war and “peace”. Normalization in this internet hegemony is brought forth when one for real speaks to another human being. This maintains the delicate equilibrium between the different social strata. The movement of people from one-world citizenship to multi-world citizenship is made possible by the discontinuity in the physical telecommunication network that keeps the demographic incongruity to minimum.
A keyboard warrior is always restless. The slightest possiblity of activism awakens the champion. The latest was that a gorilla was killed and people shared their feelings. Some showed solidarity to human stupidity to laud the efforts to save a child , that saved humankind from wilderness (though captivated and endangered). Some loathed the efforts of the zookeeper and bickered about the human stupidity that led to a whole series of events, from endangering animals, imprisoning , removing the barrier between captivity and guests (for natural watching), bringing up and inviting a human who could not manage her own kids (let alone animals), who paid the zoo (in form of ticket), to let the kid fall and let the Mighty Gorilla “protect” and let the Gorilla (Harambe) be shot to save the kid. God knows why it did not fell on the kid and then it would have been another stupidity. Harambe and this stupidity will be one among the many in the annals of human history. The collection of achievements to save human species. But the keyboard warrior will not be silent. For there is a world to be saved. Remember, 8 years ago someone wrote Human Welfare with a Question mark?
“Once a warrior always a warrior” works for keyboard warriors too. The fingers twitch at a shared photo of man made disaster or incident , the keyboard warrior wakes up to action. Keyboard warriors strive to respond, react and show the world some virtual humanity. It may be a few words that can dwell in the heart of the casual reader that changes perspectives and support and actions and reactions. This is all the work of a genuine keyboard warrior whom we should acknowledge for the virile vigilant efforts of an undying unidentified (often fake id) heroes. It is this species that the God has send on earth Homo KeyWar (Keyboard Warriors) to maintain this world as a single piece woven in the intricate internetwork of things and stuff. Salute to them.