Greetings and Surprise!
This comes to you via the special task force formed by the Central Department of Health to identify, quarantine and heal those who’ve been unknowing victims of a deadly social media disease, JAT.
Before you think this is a hoax as you haven’t heard of it on conventional media, Satyamev Jayate or the trending topics list, let us clarify that Just Another Tweeter (JAT) is still a niche disorder but if proactive measures such as this check aren’t taken, it promises to ruin the lives of many.
JAT refers to a growing number of infected Twitter users who have been tweeting, opinionating, outraging in a uniform manner, and show similar eating, drinking and sleep patterns. At first thought of to be a cult group a la Fight Club, it has been recently discovered to be a brain-dead zombie clique, a la Kya Super Kool Hai Hum.
As it is difficult to trace a JAT from his/her looks, our experts have designed this behavioural test to save those who’re on the brink from those who’ve gone beyond repair. For best results, keep a sackful of salt handy as you answer this.
Name or handle: _________________
Age as in Display Picture:______
Weight (in instagrams): _______Location (as on last Four Square auto-update): ___________
Do you have a social life once you log off Twitter?
- I never log off Twitter
1. How did you follow the recently concluded London Olympics?
a. Er, on TV and news?
b. Cheered/ranted when others did. On Twitter
c. Spotted a tweet, Googled sport details, posted opinion/joke.
2. What according to you was the biggest event of your life last year?
a. New job/marriage/award
b. Cricket World Cup win, b**ches!
3. If you are in Worli and don’t know the route to go to Phoenix Mills, what do you do?
a. Ask a pan-wala
b. Use Google maps
c. Tweet to ask.
4. You hear of a shocking scandal/controversy in a field/country that’s got no bearing on you. What’s your first reaction?
a. Ouch. Okay, moving on?
b. Read, type opinion, backspace
c. Shoot pre-emptive outrage as if your home’s on fire, Google, more outrage.
5. Which of these recent events would you best describe as ‘epic’?
a. The incredible revelation of the Higgs Boson particle, which promises to change physics forever
b. Both the Gangs of Wasseypur films
c. Your hairstyle this morning.
6. Your friend has just texted you news of him being a parent for the first time. Your reply?
a. ‘Congratulations!’ Is the mother fine?
b. ‘#Win! Tweeting right away!’
c. ‘Twitpic or it didn’t happen.’
7. Have you met a stand-up comic/cupcake chef/ journalist in real life?
b. Yeah they’re all over on Tw.. no wait, not in real life
c. Yes, this morning in the mirror
Congratulations, you have a life indeed! You show no signs of being a social animal on Twitter as you have real friends, priorities and a job that doesn’t involve relentless self-promotion. You are curious and informed, and with the time on hand, you probably go to cooler places and do fancier things than some JAT victims but don’t feel the need to tell the world. Though we suspect you might be a prey of another disorder on Facebook or might be a passive tweeter, we do know you have more people following you in real life without you having documented your awesomeness. Keep it up!
Bad news: You’re on the brink of being a JAT. Good news: There is a cure. Yes, after making you discover the wonders of timelines and mentions, the JAT zombies have been slow-poisoning you into becoming one of them. You do show self-restraint at times but we’re afraid there’s more work to be done if you don’t want to be Will Smith’s character from I am Legend. Next time a fine dish appears, reach for the fork instead of the Instagram app; when your seven-year-old creates a fuss, talk to him before tweeting about it; avoid the urge to document your flight journeys – thousands of people fly every day and land safely without giving a single flying fu.. um, tweet. And remember, talking about macaroons and wines might get you more followers, but spending time with your sexually frustrated partner will save your relationship. Your choice.
This the first call for you and your fellow tweetards to board the JAT plane to Hyperland. Don’t get us wrong, we liked you earlier; in fact you were bright, talented blokes before you got addicted to hash (tags), and the social media monster separated you hyper-connected ones from the lesser social people. We’re sending you to a country where everyone speaks in 140 characters, deals in currency known as RTs, where scores of homeless pups and kittens begging to be adopted and there are no boring professionals such as doctors or engineers, just social media evangelists, indie artists and photographers who shoot a new person every day. However, we do hope you have a change of heart there and decide to fly back (without tweeting about it). After all, your loveless child/spouse/friend/colleague has been waiting for you to mention their name for real.