OK. Since there are some questions on this particular paragraph in the previous post and tweets that I have posted which might sound similar to this.
One of the things I feel is missing today, in this era of super-fast attempted comprehension and hence I believe what has actually been communicated in black and white is being happily misinterpreted. People are in a hurry to read, in a hurry to understand and in a hurry to interpreter in their own words. Not much reading. Not much reflection is happening. I realized I was speed reading and missing the point once in a while and realized I would read anything, be it a tweet or a newspaper when I can devote those minutes to reading the written word.
Now coming back to the paragraph that I started off about at the beginning of this post
"I ll tweet, maybe blog about issues closest to my heart, raise funds and spread word for causes. And might even go support Anna Hazare and sit on a fast. But that is all. If you are one to say, "Oh, if you can't change the system by joining it, don't complain". If you say that, Would you accept it if I say, for example, "Dont criticize a film or say that it is bad or a song is bad unless and until you can compose or come up with something better."
The question was "Would you accept it if I said you cannot criticize a film?" I didn't say don't criticize. I am nobody to tell anyone don't criticize. In the same vein, I would also say that it is in my purview to accept something as criticism or, to put it plainly, brush it aside as bullshitting and I think the sense of faux satisfaction that a layman turned 'critic' gets by just word-lashing someone in the name of 'constructive criticism'.
I am brought up to take criticism. In my entire life I have hardly heard even a fraction of the compliments or praise that the next contestant in a reality show today would have heard. I have been raised and now also proudly belong to a school of thought which believes a talented child should not be praised on the face and that it would lead to the child stagnating. (This is an entirely different topic - my mom is the right person to blog about this - And then I have the special talent of meandering here and there before I come to the point on most of my posts. So, if you are not new to my blog, you would probably smile and say 'yeah'. Or if you hate my guts, you'd curse me and read on anyway :p)
Now for this question of criticism and taking it.
I guess blogging and tweeting and everything else has opened the floodgates of brash expression, on a not so new platform. Everyone is proud of being outspoken, 'honest', straightforward and similes thereof. A lot of people are wannabe journalists. A lot of people are wannabe critics.
That said, I am also the person who sometimes has wondered about the expertise/scholarship of a present day critic even in a reputed newspaper. I wonder what they base their opinion on. Not of the truly learned critic of a different era.
I humbly believe that watching every film that releases and having an opinion does not make someone a critic. So here you may ask, OK Miss I-refuse-to-get-down-from-my-high-horses, what is your exalted opinion on what a critic should be?
I haven't defined the perfect critic yet. But I think they are someone who is as honest (what am I asking for?), free of personal bias (what am I asking for, again?), has to be an expert on the subject (IMHumbleOpinion) especially the third point if they are going all out to denounce someone or something and if they are, they must justify why they are doing it.If I were reading that piece it would definitely finally rest in my mind whether I accept the reasons or not. We are all judges of something or the other at various points in everyday life.
I have taken advise from the people who I know only want the best from me and of me. My mother always said, "azha azha solluva tham manusha, ooru sirikka sirikka paesum" I know that, I realize that too.
I know that the very same people who might compliment me today on the blog or on twitter or organically might actually believe a piece of crappy gossip, repeat it in various places and hold me guilty until innocent. The benefit of doubt will never exist for someone who is in the public eye. I even say that if anyone were to see me in an accident and bleeding on the road, I would probably bet one of my prized possessions that most even if they recognize me, would only drive past. Because who would want to go get caught up with the police and the hospital and the responsibility that comes with it? Someone might call the ambulance but thats all. Because ultimately, none really cares for anyone except the family (if you are lucky) or the ones that truly love you. Everyone else are passing clouds.
That doesn't mean I am not grateful for the love and people who wish me well from wherever they are. The good energy that comes my way or the people that genuinely pray for my well being.
But just looking at all this with a sense of detachment. Life remains a lone journey. Sometimes you might have people who might travel a certain distance with you but that's all there is to it.
As for why I don't talk about other music albums or films -
I don't even mention which movie I watch or which album I have heard these days because people ask me for my opinion. And most people don't want to accept it if I said I liked the album. Or a film. It is the age of sensationalism and people wanting to become news-makers (by making up news at times) and news-breakers. A good number of average tweeters and bloggers today wants to compete with no less than the NDTVs and CNNs of the world in 'Breaking News'.
I guess like everything that goes through growth, peaks and rattles or whatever and then settles, this obsession with wanting to share everything and wanting to opine on everything under the sun will soon hit a saturation point on the social media.
I don't think blogging is journalism. Just like how a diary cannot be called a book or a piece of literature. A weblog is a weblog is a weblog. Call it whatever. Host it wherever. It is a personal opinion. Some blogs might have research, might have supporting data for the veracity of the claims. But then, hey, if I change this opinion in the future and you see a post which might be contradictory to this, don't kill me. Man is supposed to learn, evolve and change.
I also find it absurd when people ask "You said this then, you changed your mind now" Or "this model said she wont act. Now she is acting". Or some such thing. So what? Is it the end of the world? Their life. Their choices. Their mind. They can maintain it, change it, not change it, whatever. And again, its their life :)
Coming back, even if I don't like something that has come from an artiste/book after having become involved in this industry, seeing how people struggle, how much a director or every technician goes through, anyone who has their heart in the right place would never criticize publicly. It doesn't mean artistes don't get negative comments or that people in the industry only keep praising each other. Na. On the contrary, I would daresay that most of the people that I have met in this business of films are happy enough to discuss what they liked/didn't like about each others' work of art over a cup of coffee or a phone call. Just that they don't let the general public know. And at the end of the day, everyone doesn't need to know everything. :) No? :)
And likewise, it makes perfect sense for me to just make a call/send an SMS or an email to someone if I had a problem with a certain thought. I definitely can let them know straight away instead of making a huge scene about it with total strangers. I somehow believe in the idea of praise in public and criticize in private.
P.S.: To those who might follow me on twitter and may even point out that a friend of mine is doing this or that, if I disagree with my friend, I ll do it in private. Never in public. And I ll never let a friend down in public. Loyalist that I am :)