Health

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8min2400

How far are you willing to go to gain followers? There’s a constant inclination on social media engagement and online activity – online digital media has indefinitely replaced traditional media. Brands and corporates are putting in a lot of money in online marketing collaborative brand partnerships and this has people desperate for followers.

Online viral video content creators and social media influencers are the go to for paid partnerships and advertising. Viral content has become a currency to this generation. The number of followers one has and things such as online presence are factors which play a key role in convergence and metrics such as pay per click (PPC), cost per click (CPC) and cost per view (CPV) determine how much money one could make. Social media influencers rely on clout to attract followers and they use these metrics to lure brand partnership deals and monetize.

The stakes are getting higher, social media is a billion dollar industry and its dominance is spreading at a rampant speed “Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the company plans to pay out $1 billion through 2022 to users who create content for its Facebook and Instagram social networks. It’s one way the company hopes to attract influencers to create content for its platforms as it competes with other popular services, such as TikTok” (Salvador Rodriguez, CNBC, July 2021).

influencer. Photo by Pixabay
influencer. Photo by Pixabay

Controversy has become more appealing than telling compelling narratives, and this has got kids messed up. I could equate this to how gangster rap had black youths thinking guns and drugs are cool. It’s one and the same thing, the youth is willing to do anything to trend even if it means negatively exposing themselves to the world. Oh, and don’t get me started with social media self-proclaimed scholars who believe their opinions are set in stone. Everyone likes to believe their ideas to be omniscient and omnipotent – it seems as if everyone has Phd of some sort and they are experts and therefore have better acumen than everyone else. There’s no room for constructive open dialogues, things always get out of hand and messages get lost in translation.

Hyper sexualism, antagonism, controversy, hate speech, mockery and trolling have become a part of our lives via social media. Influencers are willing to break an arm and a leg for the sake of relevancy. Just think about the viral video of the young school pupil from Limpopo, Mbilwi secondary school who committed suicide after she was bullied and violated by another pupil on camera. Not only was she abused and violated, it happened in front of the world to see and her perpetrator was cheered by other pupils. What about the recent passing of South African legendary actor Patrick Shai who committed suicide after a social media escapade. The culture of trolling and the hyper sexualization of women is appealing to the masses.

social Media world. Photo from Pixabay
social Media world. Photo from Pixabay

A few weeks ago, a South African young lady posted a picture of her private parts on Twitter and the picture went viral. Unmistakably, her strategy worked, she gained more followers. OnlyFans has become an online brothel of some sort, with users selling nudes and adult explicit content. “OnlyFans is a social media content sharing platform with statistics showing that there are more than 170 million registered subscribers and over 1.5 million content creators around the world. Let’s take a look at some OnlyFans statistics that might surprise you” (Jason Wise, EarthWeb, February 15, 2022).

Often too many times what trends is vile content and sad enough it has become a normality.

I have a love and hate relationship with social media, I acknowledge how it has created a platform for content creators, businesses, marketers and people to connect with the world. Take for example how it has accelerated the growth of Amapiano as a new genre and thus setting it to the world in a short space. Or how entrepreneurs market their businesses and people get jobs via social media. A couple of celebrities also do buy school uniforms and groceries for the needy and giveaway bursaries and or education aid via social media. I love the positive and empowering aspect of social media, what I have a qualm with its negativity.

mobile-phone. Photo from Pixabay
mobile-phone. Photo from Pixabay
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7min22160

IT’S no surprise that the West considered Dr. Sebi a health fraud because he stood firm against the pharmaceutical industry, but it’s unsettling to see Africans reject the natural way of healing. But four years after Sebi’s passing, and being caught in a certain pandemic Noni Godole is bringing about a change in the relationship abo darkie have with healthy eating.

“I feel like our Creator/ Umvelinqange would move the earth just to get our attention, we are by birth attached to The Mother and She will do anything to get us to connect to our true selves. Somehow this has brought [us] closer to home than anything. We got to cook more, get to taste ginger, trust nature much deeper than we ever have. I was raised with umhlonyane, I still give it to my kids and I have it in the garden. For the first [time] our people actually believed in nature and trusted nature to heal them,” says Godole.

Noni doing her thang. Photo supplied
Noni doing her thang. Photo supplied

Godole who is a chef and an untiring advocate for herbal healing hosts the Indigenous Food and Herb Expo this Heritage day at Betty’s BnB in Sharpville, in the Vaal. “I know our people are the hardest hit, we’re always the hardest hit where identity is concerned, we are given a day to celebrate who we are and a piece of our truth is slowly being wiped away by the ever evolving world and of course convenience with that comes self-destruction and we tear pieces of our DNA while at it.” Godole tells me.

Noni's dish. Photo by Native Rebles
Noni’s dish. Photo by Native Rebles

“This Expo hopes to reclaim our heritage and start eating right again, reclaim our relationship with the soil, with nature. The food we are consuming and claimed to be our own is a lie and it’s here to move us even further from our truth.”

The importance of this being hosted in the township should not be downplayed because too many times these expos- be it cannabis, wine or sex- are hosted in the burbs by Caucasians. It also dispels the notion that abantu can’t organise themselves. Godole says the Expo will go from hood to hood, to preach the gospel of eating healthy. They plan to hit the Ekurhuleni after this.

Eating healthy seems daunting, not only for the taste buds but also the pocket. It’s a stigma attached to eating well, that it’s expensive.  “That healthy eating is expensive and it’s for white people. I can’t deal!!!” exclaims Godole.

Mama in tha kitchen with her greens. Photo supplied
Mama in tha kitchen with her greens. Photo supplied

“Social conditioning is what’s killing us, we are told good food is expensive, and for you to be healthy you must spend. How much is a seedling, how much is one seed? A veg combo compared to a meat combo? By choosing veggies or growing them yourself over buying meat every day, meat which is killing you while you at it. We’ve been wrongly programmed, go to the Yeoville market and see the excuses we create for convenience.”

The Expo will also include performances and presentations by Noni and her guests. “It’s time we became ourselves, it’s time we lived our truth openly because that is what will save us. We have natural born, gifted healers among us and it’s like having a team of super heroes that were chosen to carry and spread light. On this day we will be sharing the knowledge that we were trusted with by what and who we are, we are suggesting much friendlier ways to live and save our world.”

Something Fishy. Photo supplied
Something Fishy. Photo supplied

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