Digital Footprint

People nowadays can easily gain popularity through Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, and the likes. Just post a video of yourself doing your most unique talent and share it to all of your friends online. Once your video spreads like wildfire, you would probably end up featured in TV Patrol or 24 Oras. And there you go, you’re popular!

                  There are indeed a lot of rise to fame stories through the internet. Charice for instance, gained her popularity with the help of her avid fan, Dave Dueñas. He uploaded videos of her performances which were fortunately seen by international producers and the rest is history. People like Charice who gained popularity through Youtube came to be known as “Youtube sensations.” And some of these so-called “Youtube sensations” who found their way to stardom are Ariel Pineda, Justin Bieber, and Mariè Digby.

While these people seem to enjoy the popularity they have gained there are others who seem to have gained popularity the hard way. And if given the option, I’m pretty sure they would rather be unpopular. Well, I’m talking about the infamous Christopher Lao and Robert Blair Carabuena.

“I should have been informed!” became the joke of the town after the video of Christopher Lao became viral. There have also been several Facebook fanpages created to bully the unfortunate guy. And just recently another guy, Robert Blair Carabuena, has been lambasted by netizens for mauling an MMDA officer. Edited photos of him looking like a devil have been shared in social networking sites. Meanwhile, the MMDA officer, Saturnino Fabros, is likewise gaining popularity now as he is being invited to several TV and Radio guestings.

At some point, the stories of these two infamous guys have been blown out of proportion since it became viral. It could have been an untold story had it not been uploaded in the internet. But times have changed, one tweet can gain several negative reactions and a photo uploaded can create rumors.   We now live in a world with a bigger audience — the digital world.

The events that  happen in the digital world may no longer be forgotten. The next generation will still be able to know about them, see them, and hear them.  Each of us leaves a digital footprint.     Fr. Stephen Cuyos, MSC, who was one of the speakers during the 1st Catholic Social Media Summit, said “Whatever you post could stay online forever.” Furthermore, he pointed out that we should “leave a digital footprint that is fully consistent with the Gospel.” Maybe it’s good to ask ourselves, “If my grandchildren would google me one day, what information about me do I want them to find out? Do I want them to find out that I have been bashing several people online? Or do I want them to find out that I have been blogging about how God has changed my life?”

The challenge for each of us is to leave a digital footprint worth tracking.

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