Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Pope Francis Tweets. A leaf for Indian Babas?

I say why not? The transition to Twitter appears so natural. After all it is so well stated in Hindu scriptures..."Kaalaya Tasmainnamaha..". Go according to the times. Tools like Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest only add arsenals to the communication channel for these traditional institutions. However, no institution can afford to stay aloof or they run the risk of getting irrelevant. Youth is not just a sweet target market for the big corporations but also for these Pontiffs, Mullahs, Swamies, Babas and Gurus. 

But social media is a two-way channel. As much as it can be used to communicate your thoughts, it has the ability to shape your own thought in the process and prove to be a pain for those intending it to use it like a newspaper. Many of the Indian Babas ( recently Asaram Bapu and Baba Ramdev) have already experienced this without even their own conscious knowledge. Their comments have been appreciated as well as dissected for sharp criticism. 

At a totally different level, the social media is a channel that has the potential to transform these traditional institutions from being closed systems to interactive systems, ready to assimilate new things and embrace opportunities for change. The Vatican has taken the first step towards it. Can our Babas afford to stay behind?