Now this is just too much. The whole Pakistani social media drama has gotten way out of hand; resulting in Youtuber and Sham Idress’s wife, Froggy, getting punched in the face!
The news broke out that Froggy got punched in the face at their latest meet up in Karachi’s Ocean Mall by someone who was part of a group of protestors chanting pro-Ducky Bhai slogans.
No matter what side of this weird online feud you are a part of, violence against women is crossing a line.
So What Really Happened?
This long feud between Ducky Bhai and Sham Idress has been going on for some time now. For those who do not know, Ducky Bhai and a whole lot of other Youtubers made videos about how Sham Idress and Froggy fake their content.
The biggest accusation was that they faked their car accident last year, just to get more viewership – labelling Sham Idrees “Scam Iblees”
In response, Sham got Ducky Bhai’s content taken down. But this just escalated the fight.
Fast forward to last month when Sham decided to visit Pakistan – to meet fans and to bury the hatchet. It initially worked, with famous Shahmeer Abbas doing collaborations with him. While trying to fix this problem, Sham called Ducky Bhai to apologize. All seemed well and good until Ducky bhai informed everyone that he had asked Sham not to post their conversation (which he did), and how Sham stole content from Pakistani Youtubers to make his videos.
Other famous YouTubers like Morroo, Zaid Ali T and Awesoma took Ducky Bhai’s side, leading us to this Civil war of Pakistani social media.
Sham Idress and Froggy have been hosting meet-and greats all over the country, including Lahore and Karachi. At Karachi’s Ocean Mall, a large group of alleged Ducky Bhai fans decided to surround and intimidate the Youtubers. In the process, Froggy was punched in the face, taking the feud to a whole new level of messed up.
Ducky Bhai, Morroo, Awesoma and Zaid Ali T all released statements condemning the incident.
The truth is, the dust hasn’t really settled yet on this incident, so this will not be the last we hear about this incident. However, we need to point out how social media influencers may want to reevaluate how they operate.
The problem that arises is that social media stars use heightened rhetoric to evoke an emotional reaction out of people.
Similar to how politcal or hate speech can influence people into action, social media stars can do the same. None of the Youtubers mentioned having ever asked their fans to attack the other.
According to Dr. Sophia Moskalenko, an expert on Psychology and Social media, “Social media discussions carry both informational and social aspects of group polarization. In news-related Twitter threads, tweets that offer new arguments supporting a particular attitude (useful facts, catchy metaphors, moral judgments) get more “likes” and retweets.
Twitter users learn relevant arguments to reinforce their own opinions. Users with more radical opinions get larger followings, precisely because their tweets use expletives and polarizing rhetoric. More radical individuals have more social influence.”
So what’s the solution?
Virality is all the rage now. But it’s important to realise that some viral content comes with a cost. Creating content that instigates hate and just for the sake of controversy isn’t doing anyone any good, no matter how many views it gets.