The Asocial Networking, published in 2011, is the first book by Dhiraj Kumar, an alumnus from IIT Kanpur. In his own words, this book is a collection of his musings on the real and online worlds, a series of 150 short articles on various aspects of the obsessive Juggernaut we now know as Social Networking.

“Once upon a time, human beings lived offline, then networking came along and nobody lived happily ever after …”

The Asocial Networking

This is how this remarkable book starts, with the author looking at our social network from different angles. There are some books which tell more about the author than the subject itself and The Asocial Networking gives a reflection of its author. Dhiraj Kumar may surprise you with his superlative power of observation and the uncanny ability to put words to the gut feelings you always had but could never be verbalized. At the same time, he exasperates with his cynicism about anything and everything and the excess of being judgmental. So take it with a pinch of salt if you feel that some of the sarcasm thrown in the pages the this book aim towards you too.

Through this book, the author makes an important point: How we have sacrificed our real lives for the virtual ones. He also delves in the human mindset to bask in the glory of others’ appreciation and the hunger for acceptance. He tries to deep dive into psychology to see how it is available by the way people are treated on Facebook and, how the behavior of the people changes as they try to fit themselves into the “hip” mold. The book is full of witty one liners like – “You are as just as good as your recent status update”. There are many moments in the book which will make you sit up with a start and exclaim – ‘Yes ! Exactly what I used to feel”. Well, this book gives words to such feelings of many of us.

The biggest virtue of the author is that he can make the reader think. He makes you take a different stance on how the Facebooks and the Twitters of the world are looked upon, and look at the things in a new light. Even the mundane actions like posting a status updates and the public reaction to it take to a new paradigm in the human psychic. However, the analysis seems to be overdone at times and sometimes even repetitive. The sarcasm could have been toned downed a bit. It is not as if the author is totally anti-social networking, it’s just that he is perhaps a bit too judgmental.

Personally, although I was not convinced with 100% of what the author said, yet he made sense to me many times. For someone for whom this is the first book, it’s a remarkable one and a very well thought upon one. However, the proof reading was not given as much attention as the author has given to his research. There are many typographic errors which could have been easily avoided. Other than this small glitch, a very much readable book.

Book Details

Book: The Asocial Networking
Author: Dhiraj Kumar
ISBN: 9381115879
ISBN-13: 9789381115879, 978-9381115879
Binding: Paperback
Publishing Date: 2011
Publisher: Leadstart Publishing Pvt Ltd
Number of Pages: 322
Language: English