Hello, 2020! How have you been?

Everyone needs closure and if it is 2020, it better be quick. No, please don’t say 2021 is going to be your year. You probably remember what happened last time you said it, right? 

Okay, Anukriti, stop with your cynicism! 2020 was not that bad too. 

Agreed. 

Maybe, let’s do a quick roundup? 

What were the overall things that happened in the digital world? I promise I will try not to make it a forced positivity game. I acknowledge that the experience was very subjective. It is a conscious choice that I am making to highlight the positive aspect for a lot of points coming forward. 

A year of dissent

Dissent was like never before. People stood up for what they thought was right. Digital platforms were actively used to raise their voices globally. Whether it be Black Lives Matter or the Kisaan protest in India, people were together and connected through the digital space. Even multiple dating apps recorded this factor that youth talked more and more about civil movements in their country and areas and stood up actively for the same. Brands too actively participated in this and showed their support in whatever way possible. For instance, most social media platforms changed their logo to black in order to show support to BLM, celebrities came forward and gave their accounts to black creators to showcase their work, and more. 

Netflix and chill? 

OTT platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar, and the likes, came to our rescue this lockdown. To be honest, in most cases one of the few forms of entertainment remaining while we were stranded and confined to our spaces. It was crying and shouting “For Nairobi” to excitedly waiting for Guddu Bhaiya’s entry to end it with “Ew David”. Honestly, the year was a golden timeline for quality online binge content. The audience was hungry for content and good shows hit the mark really well. I do not understand those remakes exactly and I want to rant a lot about them but Sima aunty has asked me to be ‘flexible’, so I will take a pass on that. 

FOOD!

With our favourite restaurants shut, we found an alternative to probably anything and everything. From pizzas to making paneer, guess we did good. Thanks, YouTube. Do you guys remember your dalgona coffee and banana bread phase? Well, we moved on the way past them and actually survived on home food! Shocking right? Food was not only limited to extravagant dishes but inculcating immunity boosters in one’s food was the trick too. Turmeric milk to kadha, we tried that too. While the world resorted to immunity pills and panic, Indian grandmothers told us to take a ‘chill-pill’ and took out their age-old immunity recipes and told us to embrace them instead. However, the claim is still very debated. But, guess what we did try them out. 

Love in the time of corona

Oops, I said the forbidden word! We actually explored a lot about relationships and love during corona. With nothing else to rely on, except our near and dear ones. We held onto them a little longer than usual. This year came with a lot of personal loss too and honestly, no amount of words or messages can replace that. We are glad that you stood strong. Relationships changed a lot and it is fine. Change is the only constant, I guess? Thanks to all the unlimited video calling apps that helped us stay connected and for a change we all became a little better at technology over the months. However, the disheartening picture of the reality of digital India and the reality of the digital divide across the globe was a bummer and came as a shock. 

It’s Digital Baby!

Everything moved digital, suddenly for many. Education, communication, business, and more! While the future might seem very luring, it is to be noted that this is a privilege. The digital inaccessibility is staring blank at our faces and by what I can figure out, it is a bitchy one! All shows, concerts, announcements, ceremonies, moved online! Raise your hand, if you attended at least one event online. As much as digital inaccessibility exists, there have been interventions both at the personal and organisational level to help curb this issue out because this phase is here to stay, post-pandemic too. Digital accessibility is a necessity now! 

Content! Content! Content!

The surge in content creation and creators have been talked about and will be in the coming years too. People picked up those old paint brushes, brushed off the dust from their ukuleles and decided to click on upload this time. Trust me, still tripping on ‘kya karu mein itni sundar hu toh aap hi batao, kya karu?’ The amount of challenges, the amount of random Binod conversation, the endless vlogs, and the likes. Content creators flourished. 

2021, it is then? 

Author: Anukriti Khemka

Anukriti Khemka is the Digital Ninja of The Wonk. She handles all the digital needs of The Wonk. She also writes for her column "Talking Trends". She loves to analyse digital trends and make sense out of them.

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