In the world which is currently experiencing globalization, several domains are no longer what they used to be. The role of the media in particular has widened with it having an influence on a number of domains, education being one of them. Electronic media and social media and networking in particular have changed the way in which traditional classrooms operate because of alternative approaches to learning now spreading like wildfire. Social media which consists of a variety of websites and applications enables individuals to share content and to engage in communication with various professionals and to access content from all over the world.
The access to publications and journals is no longer limited to those which are available in the library of any school or university. Instead, universities in particular are now aiding students by providing them with access to content, which can be used to not only enhance their knowledge on the subject of interest but which also enables them to broaden their perspective by digging deeper and going beyond what is available at hand. Similarly, those students who wish to publish their work and to have their say on a matter available for all to read over the internet can with ease create their own blogs and freely express their opinions. That is the great thing about the electronic media; it offers an individual the ability to express himself freely. While this is an aspect which could very likely be taken away from individuals with the recent Cyber Crime Bill being debated upon, it is what makes the Internet and the media what it is. Without the freedom of expression and being able to express oneself through words, the media is going to benefit no one except those who controls what is and isn’t appropriate to be published over the electronic media.
Additionally, sites such as Facebook and Twitter while having their negatives associated with them allows students to interact with, share their opinions on and engage in intellectual debates which gives them the ability to think critically and to broaden their scope. Knowledge is shared and networking is engaged in which are integral parts of these mediums of communication and while initially, parents, teachers and educators were not as open to the concept, today these are seen as indispensable to the education sector within Pakistan.
Handy source of employment
Skype is yet another medium of communication which is being utilized by not only students but by professionals as well. Due to the world now becoming a global economy, individuals are no longer restricted to seeking jobs in countries where they live. While this might have been a restriction in the past, with the advent and progress of technology and means of communication, educational institutions too are encouraging their students to apply to multinational companies and to not necessarily restrict themselves from getting jobs in the country. For this purpose, Skype tends to come in handy as a number of job interviews are conducted through this program, which eliminates the requirement of a physical presence. Virtual communication is enough for a potential candidate and an employer to interact and for each to make decisions accordingly. This practice is one which is being utilized by companies all over the world and the trend has caught up to Pakistan as well. While it is true that the youth is needed in our country as well and that they ought to contribute to the economy and progress of the nation, the availability of options is what makes it possible for them not to restrict themselves any longer.
Websites such as LinkedIn are now a must for every student to make use of and create a profile on as it is seen to be the place where professionals come to look for the right candidate for when they are hiring. This has become something which even educational institutions are now recommending students for because it gives them an online presence. The goal is not simply to create a profile but to update their work experience and interests and to interact with other professionals who are already in the field. Networking has thus become key to helping the graduates of today to land a decent job. While networking has been in the past associated with making a good first impression when meeting a potential employer and while this still holds great importance, the idea is that one is no longer restricted to this method of networking.
An additional benefit associated with the electronic media for every individual including students and the youth of today is that it allows them to stay connected with what is happening around the world. Everyone makes use of laptops, tablets and smart phones which provide 24/7 access to the internet. When stories break, it is the electronic media which immediately publishes the story and when social media is involved, millions of individuals are informed regarding the event within seconds. The reporting and transmission of information occurs not only in the form of articles but videos and interviews are also uploaded for viewers to see which doesn’t require them to pick up a newspaper the next morning. One of the reasons as to why the readership of print media is declining is because electronic media has now taken over the aspect of immediacy due to which the former now faces a time lag when it comes to reporting the news.
Overall, while there are definitely advantages and disadvantages associated with every new innovation which occurs, it ultimately comes down to how that particular feature is utilized. Undoubtedly the internet does have aspects of it which aren’t suitable for the youth and while action is being taken to make sure that those areas are banned from being viewed, there are a number of people who actually make use of the Internet for positive and beneficial reasons. And thus while it is seen that the government is aiming to restrict the freedom of expression enjoyed by many and with them banning sites such as YouTube and wanting to bring in access to the site without the restricted content being available and while that is an entirely different debate altogether, it just goes to show the two sides of the argument.