War in the Times of Internet (Listicle)

What does it mean to witness war in the times of the Internet and by an Internet-savvy generation? February 2022 has seen the beginning of a new war. In the one week that the war has progressed, here are the 05 ways the internet has changed the way one experiences war, especially those who are outside the actual war zone.

  1. Minute by Minute Updates

Thanks to the internet, there is a minimum lag in getting situation reports. The internet has turned the victims into reporters. All sides are able to tell their version of the story and broadcast updates for the same to the entire world linked with the internet. There are textual, visual, and personal testaments to the ongoing war. There is a minute-by-minute update on strategies, deliberations, discussions, and events all on one platform.

2. Fake News and Propaganda

The instant availability of news makes it also impossible to completely verify its veracity. In the hoard of urgent news, important news often gets left behind. In the race to be fastest, it rarely matters in what shape one reaches the podium.

And in their defense, being the fastest does have its perks. Oftentimes, the first news is what sells the most, even if it is wrong. This makes the propaganda machines work harder and faster. In the present time, it is equally necessary to look at the news and the source of the news to get a better picture of the situation. In the case of war, it is not only essential but crucial.

3. Unsolicited Advice to Everyone Involved

With so much information(both true and false) available to the average person, it is hard not to fall into the hubris of considering oneself as an expert on the topic at hand. It happened in the pandemic and it is happening in the war. A new group of one-issue-experts has risen who try to simplify a complex issue as only they can. They consider the traditional experts outdated, orthodox, and under the influence of the powers that dominate the mainstream narratives. On the other hand, they are beacons of truth and the most impartial judge of information.

4. Memes

The ever-consistent-mocking-meme-making collective that does not care whether it is a war or not. All it needs is new attention-grabbing material to make its memes. The darker the meme, the more attention it will generate in certain sections of the internet. The vanilla versions of memes will be mass distributed to the public across the world, to produce diabolical laughter in its recipients. There might be outrage on the memes itself, which will fuel another spurt of meta memes. All in all, memes diffuse and downplay the situation while sometimes also displaying some open secret underneath its sarcasm.

5. Internet Archive

The Internet does not forget anything. In the present atmosphere, the internet generation also does not forgive anyone. The war in the internet times will go down as the most documented war in modern times and the actions of everyone involved will invite judgment once there is time to breathe. All the double standards, the casual racism, the self-interested actions, the betrayals, the false narratives will be stored in the internet archive to be dissected by the public in the near future.

Whether there are any learnings from them, is a thing yet to be discovered.

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