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Uncensored freedom of speech

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They say we should embrace globalisation and technology with everything you’ve got or get left behind.

We are supposed to move with the times and that includes adapting and adopting changes in self expression verbally and otherwise. In the advent of social media and networking, this seems particularly true.

Whereas back in our day, we used to take pen to paper, write out each word in full, construct proper sentences, modern technology has changed all that.

An sms has to be within 160 words and twitter 140 words, so all of a sudden a scented note that used to be written as “I waited for you my love, but left at 10 ” is now smsed as “I w8td 4u my luv bt lft @10”. Can you imagine if we were to publish a full book using abbreviations, wouldn’t that just be fantastic. But I digress.

My real concern is not so much the super abbreviation of words, it’s the accessibility and availability to these social platforms and the internet in general which hitherto are uncensored.

Now anyone and everyone can access the internet using their mobile phones, and visit whatever site they wish. Now because people want to be expressive and get noticed, the language – that I re-iterate is uncensored- is getting more and more graphic and vulgar.

On twitter, a person can call themselves whatever they want, names which for purposes of not causing heart attacks, I will not mention in this respectable publication. It is considered really cool and hip to be rude – OMG (oh my goodness).

Four letter words are the order of the day – and I don’t mean the four letter words they say women should use in their daily live, ie cook, wash, iron, dust and so forth.

People talk about anything freely, no holds barred, in the name of having open discussions. A popular DJ on his Facebook page focuses almost solely on – to put it politely – the birds and bees.

The disturbing thing is his followers are all young. What are we saying to our youth, that we are all part of one global family, so let’s share best practices? If we are all part of one family, doesn’t the focused topic therefore become incestuous? Where do we draw the line?

I realise that internet-based social platforms are difficult to censor, but sadly, the right to freely express ourselves has now even infiltrated public domain such as newspapers and radio. Where is the censorship board? Does it still exist?

How is it possible that radio DJs can play songs with swear words live on air during prime time (or any time for that matter), what happened to radio versions?

How is it possible that a paper that publishes almost pornographic material is sold on almost every street corner, where any child can get their hands on it? Surely that publication should be sold whereever material such as Playboy are secretly sold – undercover, on the sly.

Back in my days of black and white television, and one radio station, such freedom of expression was a definite no-no. We felt we had an obligation to ourselves and the future generation to keep things clean and simple.

Only in private conversations where you were with very close friends, did you lose yourselves. Maybe I should now retire to an old people’s home where there are only record players and books, to save myself from the daily shock and horror of this uncensored world.

Your thoughts are most welcome, e-mail :

oldschoolvalues@ymail.com

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