Who does not own a “smartphone” these days? Who does not use “Internet”. What more proof that internet has become an integral part of your life will you need if I point out that you too are reading this article?
Form looking for a nice restaurant to eat or searching for definition of a word we run to our friend/enemy THE INTERNET more than we ask people around us (I guess I do not need to justify the reason of calling internet friend or enemy, we are all aware of its pros and cons).
Okay, let’s undertake a little activity. Open your phone’s Gallery and look at the number of images in your screenshot folder.
How many do you have? (Mine says 78)
Now open that folder and see the type of screen grabs you have. Guessing from the type of individuals we are, there will be around 50% quotes or motivational images you liked on Instagram, Facebook or any other site you surf daily. Then maybe 10-15% of memes or similar stuff you found interesting. 20-30% images will be the chats you saved for future reference or to send/show it to your friend. And a tiny percentage of it will be images of people (Friend, enemy, crush, Ex-partner, future love interest or any such people whose face we want to see). It’s like all interesting things in your life has a relatable screenshot.
Screenshots never used to be that powerful. Sharing one was largely reserved for epic videogame wins or error messages during olden times. But now people routinely take screenshots of funny/outrageous comments on social media to share with friends. Twitter users post grabs of things they’re reading. College students take notes by screenshotting articles and books on their phones, tablets, and laptops. A study indicates that users of Evernote on iOS save 45 percent more screenshots than a year ago.
The same thing happened with cameraphones a decade ago, when we suddenly began capturing evanescent moments from our physical lives. Today some of our most intense experiences are online, so screenshots serve the same function. It’s photography for life on the screen.
Screenshots can also be almost forensic, a way to prove to others that you’re really seeing the crazy stuff you’re seeing. The first viral hit of the screenshot age was the autocorrect errors in SMS. Now screenshots hold people accountable for their terrible online words.
Even more arrestingly, though, screenshots let you see other people’s screenworlds, it sometimes invades other person’s privacy. A girl may never know how many images a guy from her friend list may have saved for what not purpose. If seen this way it sounds so creepy! (Well a girl can do this too, but I don’t know if guys will find it uncanny)
Of course, every coin has its own two sides and one will never be able to separate the good and bad of this cultural evolution too. So, one can just take pleasure of the good and hope that the corrupt or evil side never shows its face.
Undeniably, one of the more delightful aspects of screenshot culture is how it can take you back to a particular time or day when you took that image. It’s like a scrapbook, or a record we used to collect during our childhood just in a digital format. This is the folder where you can find all the things you liked and thought it should be saved for later. Like a lifetime of scraps, glimpsed through the screen.
-Nithi : )