As a million of my angst-ridden Facebook status messages have indicated – I am in a search for a home. Ok, not a home. A house will do. It has been a month roughly and nothing seems to have worked. It almost feels like the universe has conspired to keep me homeless just a while longer.
99acres.com has almost become my home page and I have lost count of how many brokers I have spoken to, how many houses I have seen. I am stunned at my patience. But in a moment’s calm, when I sit down to write this Reporter’s Diary, I try to think of something else. And fail miserably. So, as my assistant deputy editor suggested – write about how the social media and the digital media is helping me in my house hunt. With an exasperated sigh I begin.
I am sorry 99acres, you are not completely helpful. Magicbricks – I am yet to figure you out. Facebook – my dearly beloved – you have proved to be so much more efficient. After one status message, I found at least five numbers in my inbox that I could call for information – tried and tested numbers mind you! My classmates, ex-boyfriend’s ex-roommate’s broker, for example, showed me a praiseworthy place.
That is perhaps the best deal with social media. Human interaction is the key to its success, as despite the Biblical calamity called the Tower of Babel – the desperate desire to communicate is what keeps Facebook and Twitter ticking – literally. The very moment the words become these symbols on the laptop/ PC screen, a semblance of impersonality creeps in. We can be more candid online, my Facebook profile might completely be false! Ever thought about it?
It’s about the self on autopilot. To become exactly what we want to be online – no one knows, no one looks deeper than the profile picture and the information that you have carefully provided. That is just as bad as the property descriptions on 99acres mind you! 99 per cent of it is a fable and the rest of the vital information is not even provided. This information they allow you to gain access to when you call the broker. And that, my friends, is not my favourite past-time! They should have just made the numbers available, most of the property photos are fake and the locations on the map completely misleading!
Come on!!! I want to shout at them – I might lie about myself, I am not lying about property. That is just unforgivable. No one will ever live on me! For the stories you put up, people are in for a nasty time out in the sun in this blazing Delhi heat. Shame on you!
That is what is the funniest. In the age where everything is rushing at the speed of sound towards the digital black hole – to meet a person face to face, speak out the terms and conditions and see the property and the product that you are paying for, is still vital.
It is like an eternal prophesy, even androids will need a heart. The human input and angle can never disappear from digital media. For the content is always primary, as clichéd as it sounds.
So, while I trudge around with the laptop and my data card all over the city and Mitsubishi goes on a pitch, Onida business gets bagged, Inquilab gets ready to be in Delhi… my search continues.