Batswana are known to be a tolerant and compassionate nation. But the development of social media seems to have taken away that concept of botho.
In recent years, we have seen a development of unfortunate behaviour by some who seem to want to compete on who posts the most entertaining or nasty comments, especially on Facebook.
This outward behaviour reared its head on Monday, following the incident of a young woman of around 25 years of age ,who allegedly jumped from the seventh floor of the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture (MYSC).
While some posted consoling messages on Facebook, some simply decided to do the opposite, turning the whole sad situation into a funny or entertaining event. Quite a number of individuals posted very insensitive messages, with some of them even using laughing emotives on their outrageous comments.
Batswana are known to fear death, and have the utmost respect for dead. When in mourning, Batswana will ensure that they are selective in what they share with the public, only sharing the departed individual's strengths rather than weaknesses, all in an effort to respect the dead. While Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) has brought a lot of good changes in the society, which include amongst others, being able to communicate and share information with ease, some people tend to abuse the opportunities presented by ICT by posting insulting messages. Social media platforms are especially the most abused, as people see them as an opportunity to get popular and attract 'likes', all for the wrong reasons. The open communication has also given birth to individuals who act like they are 'experts' who seem to
Soon after the painful incident at MYSC happened, social media was abuzz with the news of the young woman's demise. Different posts, with varying information appeared on Facebook, posted by some media houses and individuals. Some claimed to know what happened and offered their analysis on why the young woman died. At this stage, the police are still investigating the traumatising incident, as such since this is a very sensitive issue let us refrain from ridiculing the young woman, and allow her family to mourn her in peace.
Yes, we are curious and would like to know what happened by letting us ask the questions in a sensitive manner, and not let the desire for 'likes' on our posts overtake our compassionate nature.
If it is indeed 'likes' that an individual is after on her/his posts, let it be creativity that does not harm or hurt anyone. Some of the comments which appeared on the posts announcing the young woman's untimely death leave a lot to be desired, whether the people meant to make them jokes or what, the comments are truly insensitive. We will not repeat the disgusting comments here, as we will be assisting these insensitive individuals publicise their disgusting comments.The comments are not all negative, as some compassionate individuals -voices of reason-still post warm consoling messages.
"It's funny how humans can wrap their mind around things and fit them into their
version of reality".
– Rick Riordan