Celebrities have forever hogged the limelight on social forums but since the advent of Twitter, it became absolutely ‘in’ to let the world know what you thought, from wherever you were, be it the Bahamas or Tahiti, sipping Sangria. Trisha recently tweeted ‘Yay crossed the 4 lakh mark..Feeling rich :) luv u guysss..thx fr kipin it going..’
Doing the rounds on Twitter and FB of late, the humblebrag, which for those who came in late is, as Urban Dictionary puts it, “Subtly letting others know about how fantastic your life is while undercutting it with a bit of self-effacing humour or ‘woe is me’ gloss.”
Film controversies, public break-ups or alleged relationships, ex-lovers to FB updates about their next big project, stars kept audiences happy and vicariously satisfied with these inputs day after day. Socialite and fashion designer Darshana Yesudas points out that this has always been the case. “Audiences always want to hear it first. With social media, they get information directly from their favourite celebrity’s page,” she says.
However, not all celebrities prefer to stick to the point. And this continuous stream of irrelevant updates is quite annoying, feels actress-beauty queen Parvathy Omanakuttan. “For me, a forum like Twitter is all about connecting with my audience,” she says, adding, “It’s about getting their opinions and trying to make my performance better. In fact, the only reason I joined was because I got a lot of requests from fans asking me to. But I don’t tweet non-stop like ‘Hey I’m off to Delhi!’ ‘Landed at the airport!’ and ‘Got a cab people!’ all in the space of ten minutes, haha. My updates are about what I feel, maybe if I read something interesting and my opinions on relevant issues.”
Actor Jiiva too ensures that he does not post any personal information. “I unfollow those who brag ostentatiously, and I get irritated when people post their day-to-day happenings!”
Social forums have made celebrities out of popular Twitterati, and Chennai-based blogger, Local Tea Party, writes satirically on a variety of everyday issues. “I interact with the followers as my real persona, and it is a terrific opportunity to get a sense of what people expect from the internet. The whole point of such mediums is to find even silly, everyday happenings funny, like an update on brushing teeth or a cockroach running by you, could sound interesting! But you wouldn’t find that funny if someone told you that in person, would you?” he remarks.
True. Perhaps it’s the vast, anonymity of cyberspace that prompts such communication. Photographer Kunal Daswani concurs, “People who indulge in humble brags may be trying to compensate for their own insecurities. The best thing to do is just find the humour in it or just ignore them.” Geethanjali Selvaraghavan, executive producer of Om Productions, points out that there is a certain sense of ownership of one’s twitterhandle. “I would post what I feel like. If someone is not okay with it, let that person unfollow or unfriend me. Even if it’s pompous, I’ve the liberty to post it,” she concludes.