The ‘Pliss to Tell’ generation


Warning, or Spoiler Alert – This may turn out to be a rant post. Sure you can bear it? All right then.

If you are anything like me, you do not ask for help from people as long as you can do things yourself. I mean, yes you depend on other people for services, but at least your own work you do, even if you’re not high on being as willing to do other people’s work. But, I’ve come to notice over the years, that what would shame me, is just a trifle for others. For example, if I needed information about an institute or a course, I’m much more likely to visit the relevant website, and talk to people of that institute only as a second opinion and not make them my primary source of information.

I would do so for two reasons. One – they are people, so their view maybe biased or wrong, or, at any rate, not as impartial as the official information. Two – because I have internet, brains and surfing skills and its absurd to bug others or depend on them for information I could easily obtain. And yet, there are scores of people looking for compressed information, they want something even easier than going to the relevant website for information!

I recently gave the TISS entrance and I’ve been flooded with such inquiries. And if these were people who went to the website first, didn’t follow and then asked me, I’d understand. No, they blatantly asked without bothering to look for themselves first! I think this is where the whole collectivistic nature of India comes in. In the west, they are very individualistic and would not ask for help as long as they can do things themselves. I think this one value should be imbibed in us – of independence. As students we are always plying on others to help us for things we can easily do, and therefore it is not a wonder that at work, when people aren’t obliged to help us, we feel stuck.

Don’t think that I don’t like giving information, in fact, if the exchange is mutual, as with friends, I love doing so. But all the people who asked me were mere acquaintances, who brushed up contact with me to only ask about the entrance exam, and if I tried to ignore, they sent such texts as if I were some culprit trying to hide information that is supposed to be openly available to the public! News flash – It is openly available to the public! It’s on their Website!

An extension of this is, that people who do not do their own work, don’t think for themselves as well. Which is why the majority is swayed by opinion and advice freely available in India. All of us can make a start to be mentally independent by being independent with our work, and not using our acquaintances or contacts as ‘tools’ to our needs and then brandishing ourselves as ‘forever alone’ because we have no real friends. We never cultivated any!

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One thought on “The ‘Pliss to Tell’ generation

  1. I wouldn’t necessarily brand india as a country that produces people who are more dependent than people born and brought up with the sensibilities of a particular state.

    Think the self-governed groom themselves exist in any situation.

    I agree, I do think most of us fall in the herd though. But then, I also think, so many folks from the west are swayed not by what their political/religious leader expects of them, but what their pop/rap icon sings or wears. I guess, the same can be said about our fixation with the movie industry and cricketers, through clever advertising they funnel a lot of the youth into the direction they are were paid too.

    On the other hand, most Indians aren’t encouraged to think different. Those that do, are shut down prematurely, those that defy the social norms are often ridiculed. If you would notice on how most of the alleged news channels operate, the host of the discussion is not expected to remain neutral, the host always has an opinion, not his. Its the opinion of the crowd, and he is the self-annointed champion that will wade to cry out for help, mock the system and jeer anyone who attempts to raise or defend an opinion which is different than the host, ergo different than that of the mass es of India. It is dumbdowned television, yes. But, everyday the not so strong can recognize the undercurrents very well.

    It’s safe to stay with the herd. For many.

    I’d agree with you, on your first point. I’d like to form my own opinion, reading someone else’s review, can help, but it also exposes me to mostly their vantage point. Best to have your own eyes make the call and send the report to the brain.

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