We are all aware of the importance of social media. It’s an excellent medium to connect and engage with our family members, friends, colleagues and also with the outside world. Over the years, it has come to play a vital role in every sphere of our life. But this is what we think of social media in normal times.
What happens when owing to a highly contagious pandemic, we are all made to work from home ? It was December, 2019 when we heard about Covid 19 virus for the first time. That time there were few scattered cases in China. We barely took notice thinking such things do happen. We became concerned only when the number of cases began increasing and casualties too increased.
Post lockdown, the ground realities had changed. There was no way people could participate in a meeting and discuss things like they did earlier. The work couldn’t have been put on hold. This is where apps like Google Meet, Zoom and Skype proved as true blessings. People realised they can still conduct meetings, discuss things and plan strategies by using these digital apps. They were anyway active on Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram for messages and sharing personal pictures.
The popularity of social media apps broke all the previous records, and now even those who hitherto abstained from social channels for some reason, willingly came forward and embraced these channels. They realised that in the changed scenario, social media was their best ally. It can help them to connect with their friends and relatives, keep them in touch with what is happening around the world, and can also entertain them in these difficult times. The best part was they could also comfortably work from home through these apps.
During the pandemic, social media played a very important role. It not only helped them as a means to know about government policies and important notifications, it also educated them about the precautions needed to keep the deadly virus at bay. People were also getting their regular quota of entertainment in the form of popular films, tv serials, standup comedy shows and song and dance shows. Since all cinema halls, auditoriums and theatres were closed because of the lockdown, Australian and global social media was one of the few mediums where people could relax and unwind themselves.
Social media was also helpful for school and college students. Since the regular classes were not taking place, there were only few avenues available to students to talk to their teachers. But platforms such as WhatsApp, and Telegram came to their rescue. Whatever doubts and queries they had, they discussed it through text messages and also used the features of audio as well as video calls quite frequently.
It won’t be an exaggeration to admit that social media was indeed a boon for people during the pandemic. But for social media, life would have been very difficult for an average person.