Category Archives: Friday Funda

The Friday Funda: The ‘Confession Page’ Rage

I went to Baba Google recently and said, “Baba! These days’ people are crazy about confession pages. They post whatever comes to their mind on a confession page. I am not on any of the confession pages so far but, wish to join one. Before that, I want to know the exact meaning of the word “CONFESSION”. Is shabd par prakash daalo baba.” Google Baba was ready with 1 crore 47 lakh results in 0.27 seconds after hearing my prashna.

Baba said, “Son! Confession means ‘An admission or acknowledgment that one has done something that one is ashamed or embarrassed about.'”
I replied, “But Baba, people are not using confession pages as per this definition. Instead of admitting something they are embarrassed about, they write something that embarrasses others. I am not delighted to see the direction these confession pages are moving towards.”
At last Baba said, “Dear! You can do one thing in that case, and that is, making “CONFESSION PAGES” a target in this week’s ‘The Friday Funda’. Tathaastu!


Here I am, with this week’s write-up which will talk about confession pages going viral around the web these days. Confession pages have been created for everything, from an educational institution to your local vegetable market, where the vegetable vendor confesses that, he charged Rs.10 extra from a regular customer, and still didn’t give her coriander for free.
Youngsters are found hitting “Likes” and posting comments on confession pages at the speed of a supercomputer. Students are finding it difficult to concentrate on their studies, and login to their social accounts after every half an hour. Hahaha! Ye toh main kam bol raha hoon. Actually, they log in after every five minutes. No?  Chalo yaar sach toh ye hai kay they don’t log-out from their social accounts.

[stextbox id=”info”]When you get the privilege to share your confessions without revealing your identity (anonymously), then you are expected to be responsible enough not to name anyone else as well in your confessions. Otherwise, the whole purpose gets defeated. This is what is being observed on almost all of the confession pages on Facebook. This is what prompted us to launch a separate website – DuConfessions.in where one can share only clean remarks as a part of your confessions and all the comments get duly moderated.[/stextbox]

Initially started as a medium to confess anything anonymously, these so-called confession pages have become a place to post offensive remarks about colleagues, educators and organizations. These confessions include students poking fun at the body language and style of their tutors, ‘dilphenk aashiqs’ confessing their attraction for a crush, whom they name openly on the confession page. Confession pages are turning into dating sites.

The purpose of starting confession pages is not clear even to the admins of these pages. Bas, sab ek hi raag aalaaptey hain “guys and gals! This page is for fun purposes.” Does that mean you can poke fun at others by naming them openly on a page? Many people, including me, do not support the very concept of confession pages because though these pages might have been launched for recharging your batteries by reading humorous but acceptable confessions, these pages have now become a source of foul comments and humiliating confessions. I don’t say that this freedom to express oneself should be withdrawn by blocking these pages, but some rules should be adhered to while posting on these confession leaves. These pages are being used to spit out hatred for a person, an institution, a law or a system and that my dear readers, is very upsetting. It seems as if some people are using confession pages as a weapon to start a cold war with someone.

On March 29, 2013 the Dean of Mumbai’s Government Dental College, lodged an official complaint against a Facebook page titled ‘GDC Mumbai Confessions’ with the city police’s Cyber Crime Cell. The ‘confessions’ GDC students posted on this page contained derogatory remarks about female classmates and criticism of the teachers.

Confessions posted on these pages are fun for those who post them but, a source of stress for the targets. It would be better if the administrators filter the content they receive before finally publishing it but, the administrators do not take this step because the inappropriate confessions are tagged as ‘sensational’. Facebook confession pages started spreading like an epidemic a few months ago and now these are eating up everyone’s valuable time like a disease. A regular Facebook user is observed to be active on at least three confession pages each day. All confession pages are not being exploited but you never know, an anonymous comment might come and spoil the page.

This new trend hypnotizes people in the age group of 16-25 and frights the coaches and the management of various institutions. Some people who have been targets on confession pages have posted requests to admins for removing derogatory posts but their requests are straightway rejected in the name of “take it as a joke” phrase.

[stextbox id=”alert”]BTW, we have created a separate confession page for Fans of Sonal Kalra as well.[/stextbox]

Safeguards:

  • Administrators of various confession pages and sites claim that they review content before making it public.
  • Facebook reviews pages on its site on a daily basis and takes immediate action on any content marked objectionable by the users.

Let me shed light on the fact that confessions posted on these confession pages are stored permanently in the web space. Misuse of these confession pages can land the person found guilty in trouble, as confessions can be traced. These confessions are anonymous on the face, but the person behind can be found out by tracking the Internet Protocol (IP address) of the user.
Facebook users have delivered mixed reactions to these confession pages. I am a regular Facebook user too and fall in the category of those who neither target nor are targets on a confession page. I am not on any of the Facebook confession pages. It might be possible that a silly confessor targets my write-up on a confession page. The best thing I can do about this is not joining a confession page and just IGNORE, IGNORE & IGNORE!

So, what’s your opinion regarding these confession pages? Confess it at techsoftwarez@gmail.com. See you next Friday  🙂

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The Friday Funda: Book Review – More of a Calmer You

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A gang of 6,000 admirers on her official facebook fan page, more than 22,000 followers on the micro-blog twitter, two unofficial websites and internet flooded with drizzle of her achievements is what triggered me to catapult this self-help paperback in my shopping cart on flipkart this February.

The front cover reads “…more of a calmer you-Witty Tips to Beat Everyday Stress” and the book-lover wonders,“Is there a way to beat something that beats every piece of my PEACE OF MIND daily?”. His eyes catch sight of Priyanka Chopra’s ‘humorous insight’ comment and thus the reader set his eyeballs rolling into this ‘definite must read’ which assures to roll you on the floor laughing, with its 57 writeups.

This second volume of Sonal Kalra’s ‘A Calmer You’ series(featured every Sunday in Hindustan Times supplement HT City) organizes the weekly columns published after the first best-seller compilation into 8 heads:

more-of-a-calmer-you-book-review

[stextbox id=”info”]1.) Calm-sutra[/stextbox]

Before the dirty minds spring out of their chairs in eagerness after reading the title, believing this section to be something that interests them, let me shed light on the fact that the intended audience for this segment is everyone out there in your family tree, from chotey bhaiyaa  to badey papa. From dealing with sulks to competition, Dr. Sonal’s amusing style is a sweet homeopathic medicine for the tart stresses in our life. My pick from this section:

[stextbox id=”info”]2.) Relation-ships along[/stextbox]

If the ‘ship of your relationship is stuck in the Samandar, Captain Sonal is here to sail you through. “Wedding stress ne band bajaya ho, Bubbly Aunty ne pakaya ho ya love story mein villain aaya ho”, then you can’t afford to skip this part of the book. To name a few:

  • Band baj gaya

  • Not a complaint book

  • Where’s my praise

have been placed here.

Sonal Kalra- Author of ...more of a calmer you

[stextbox id=”info”]3.) Cubicle Chaos[/stextbox]

We expend around nine hours of our day and half of our life in that workplace cubicle. The same cubicle seems like hell if a  jerk colleague, a loudspeaker boss, a gossip chain and office politics is what we have to trade with. The author infuses in the readers, skill to handle workplace stress via this slice. Rationality prevails throughout.

[stextbox id=”info”]4.) Mind It[/stextbox]

So you have read and practiced the calmness mantras penned in the first three chapters of this treasure. Congratulations! you are through with the fundamental course of SK’s ‘Calmness Ki Paathshala’ but ‘Mind It’, you must undertake the advanced course too in order to be a Master of Calmerology. Kudos to Sonal’s microscopic observation, this branch of Calmness Tree deals with causes of  strain not revealed by any Baba Relaxonath. For instance, one of the write-ups placed here talks about facebook manners. ‘Table manners toh tuition teacher bhi sikhati thi, facebook manners sikhaney vaali yeh pehli  teacher hain’. A standing ovation for that.

[stextbox id=”info”]5.) What the tech[/stextbox]

What the tech points out the not-so-smart use of smartphones, being overbooked by faceBOOK etc. issues. Having edited a tech magazine previously, Sonal clearly distinguishes a techilicious being from a techoholic.

[stextbox id=”info”]6.) Generation trap[/stextbox]

The author has attempted to bridge the gap between ‘Hamare zamane mein toh’ and ‘Hai..Ye Mummy ke Rishtedaar’ generations with her unparalleled comic ishtylee. Isey padhney ka asli mazaa sab ke saath aata hai.

I am me, Not Anna & Boast is the secret of my energy are the second-last and last sectors of this volume and I would like to keep their content under wraps because the review so far is enough to conclude that the author has churned out yet another best-seller. Illustrations are aesthetic and will supplement your reading pleasure. I wish I could see more of them and thus would urge the author to write another edition ‘ONCE MORE A CALMER YOU’ soon.

Publisher Wisdom Tree has done a laudable work by avoiding any sort of faux pas in the output and this author-publisher combination doesn’t give the readers any chance to rate them less than a ten-on-ten.

Money doesn’t grow on trees but I would say ‘Wisdom Tree is an exception’. Tons of Royalty arriving for you Sonal. You continue to own the right to deliver your dialogue “Royalty toh bhejo…” for your out of the box Calmness Gyaan stamped  in this edition.

After four days of hard work on writing this review, its time to wait for your verdict on this week’s Friday Funda. See ya! next Friday. Stay Calm-subha shaam….:-)

You can contact the above review at: http://www.facebook.com/mohit.unconventional. or  techsoftwarez@gmail.com.

Social De-addiction-Satisfaction Guaranteed

social-networking-addict
There was a time when parents used to warn their children to return  home from  the park at the specified time or else they would be locked in the perpetually non-existent “Chuhon wala Kamra” for coming back home late and now, the parents whine that their kids hardly step out of home. Even if they do, the universe knows whether they are at Nathu Ram departmental store or at Bondhu Lal sweet shop. All thanks to the position update option available at numerous social networking websites. Sitting at Mcdonalds, you fail to spend quality time with the persons sitting at the opposite side of the table because you were occupied telling your imaginary friends/followers on facebook, twitter and whatsapp that you have ordered the happy price menu & the bill amount inclusive of all taxes is Rs. 99.99. A strong impulse to crack that criminal case on facebook conquers the need to work out a strategy for the exam tomorrow.

Social networking websites are manufacturers of desire. The desire to check facebook notifications when your mind says that ‘I am bored’, desire to browse tweets when your mind says ‘lets see whats going on around the world’. The desire is so intense that even while you are doing some important work, social applications are running behind the Word processor window on a computer or minimzed to tray on your smartphone. You put our phone away for a while and the thought of checking texts, emails, notifications etc. lurks in your mind, you take a short break from work and check your social accounts in that time.

If you get to hear “you are always logged on”, “put your phone away”, “kabhi computer/phone ko saans bhi lene diya karo” like sentences more than twice a day and depict all/any of the traits mentioned in this para, you should admit that you are a social addict. At least, ‘I admit that I am’ and I don’t support the point of giving up social network completely because ‘excess of everything is bad’, be it social addiction or social de-addiction to an extent that we flee from the social front. The only goal of this writeup is to bring myself and the readers back to being a social animal from being a social wild animal which the low cost internet packages have made us. Lets talk about the steps we can take to achieve our goal of being a social animal from being socially wild:-

1.) Motivation:- The first thing you can do to achieve any objective is to motivate yourself to do the same. Write down a few things you can do if you don’t use social sites for a few hours, a few benefits of not being on social sites for a few days etc. Read these points daily. “Motivation is doing the thing you said you would do long after the time the mood you said it in has left you.” Read these points everyday to stay motivated to achieve your goal. This motivation technique can be used to achieve any goal in general.
motivation

1.) Shut-down timers- Shut-down timers are very minute size softwares available liberally and easily on the internet which shut down your computer at the time you specify . So, if you are really serious on getting rid of the ‘checking habit’, install this in your PC. The next time you log-in to your social account, set a timer of 30 minutes or 1 hour and the computer will automatically shut down at the specified time. Even if you bang your head in the monitor screen or scream “Nahiiii….” Loudly because you wanted to ‘Like’ the status of your girlfriend, the computer won’t pay heed to your actions or words and perform its job. You may also set an alarm on your cell phone for this purpose but, I won’t support that because it is very easy to turn off the cell phone alarm and continue the session.
free-shutdown-timer

2.) Cut the connection– Secondly, you should reduce the means through which you can access your social network. Cell phones are fundamentally meant for making and taking calls and sending short messages, if you’ll not recharge your cell phone internet pack the next time, that’ll surely help you get rid of the habit forming technology.
images

3.) Respect the rules- Internet serves various other purposes apart from being a means for you to connect socially. Avoid the use of social networking sites while being at workplace because the bills of that connection are being paid to appreciate the output you have achieved through the productive use of internet, not to appreciate the criminal cases you have solved on facebook. Ask a colleague to block the social networking sites from your workplace system, if you are an addict, you won’t block it on your own.
parental-control

4.) Parental controls- If you are a parent and wish to restrict your child’s usage of social network or the computer in a broader sense, use the parental control option in windows vista, windows 7 and later versions of windows. This option allows you to restrict the time and days for which your child can use the computer and also the websites your child can visit. For users of windows xp and other operating systems, softwares serving the same purpose are freely available on the web. You won’t have to complain about your child’s addiction anymore.
parental-control-social-networking

5.) Take a break – Take a piece of pen and paper, write down the things you can do in your free time, except social networking. It can be writing an article, working out, reading a book etc. Next, delete all the web browsers, social applications and their setups from your computer and cell phones, USB drive for a week. Ask a person you trust to change the password of your social account. I do this for a month every year and always achieve the self-improvement objectives I set. This technique is very useful if you are keen on quitting social network for exams or an important project you wish to focus on. If you are highly addicted to social media try doing this for 2-3 days. See the results and then you’ll love taking a break as I do.  Remember: Don’t tell the world that you are taking a brake if you seriously wish to achieve your goal or else you’ll end up checking how many people liked your decision on facebook.
break-time

6.) Sticky notes- Set up a wallpaper on your phone or PC which reminds you that you have to restrict your usage of social networking sites and applications. I placed a sticky note on my computer screen and wrote on the white board in my room in bold letters “I AM NOT A SOCIAL ADDICT” when I wanted to achieve this objective. Reason: “OUT OF SIGHT IS OUT OF MIND”.Obtain a printout of this piece of writing, read it, re-read it and tell me your progress.

After giving this free fund advice I would say one thing “YOUR PARENTS WILL NEVER BE PROUD IF YOU ARE ADDICTED TO SOMETHING- BE IT DRUGS OR SOCIAL NETWORK

Waiting for ‘Likes’ and ‘comments’ on the first FRIDAY FUNDA. Mail me at: techsoftwarez (at) gmail.com or join me at facebook.com/mohit.unconventional.