Social media eliminates the danger of your message being lost in translation: Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

The chairperson and managing director of Biocon on the power of social media and how to keep trolls at bay

Published: Oct 10, 2017

Starting out as a newswire journalist covering beats as diverse as business, politics, entertainment, crime, civic affairs, cricket and defence, I was keen to pursue a career in print or broadcast journalism. But the emerging world of multimedia storytelling promised a fascinating future, and I changed my focus to digital media more than a decade ago. Before Forbes India, I have worked for organisations such as ANI, Money Control, Arabian Business, Yahoo India and VFS Global. I hold master's degrees in Communication Studies (University of Pune, India) and Journalism (University of Westminster, London, UK).

g_100167_twitter_280x210.jpg20  high-profile executives and creatives who have left Twitter to join, or found, health-tech firms in the past two years
Image: Shutterstock

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Q. What got you started on social media?
I took to social media because I realised that digital platforms like Twitter and blogs enable you to share your views with the world at large. It gives you an opportunity to engage with your audience in real time.

Unlike traditional forms of media, social media eliminates the danger of your message being ‘lost in translation’. I like to keep myself abreast of the latest developments around the world, and social media platforms help me stay connected. It empowers me to play the role of a global citizen effectively.

I enjoy sharing my opinions on a wide variety of global and local issues; I counsel entrepreneurs and professionals seeking guidance; I sometimes address the concerns of Biocon’s shareholders and even cheer the Indian cricket team!

Q. How would you describe your social media style?
I believe that to be effective on Twitter or any other social media platform, you need to be able to not only multitask but also have relevant, informative and meaningful conversations. Hence, I share posts that give purposeful information, and have conversations that are worthwhile.

Q. Any specific dos and don’ts to remember while posting on social media?
Social media outlets are a great platform to build opinion and critical mass on an issue, thereby galvanising people into action. Hence, it is important to be responsible. One needs to be wary of sharing fake news or rumours.

There is also a trend of social media tools being abused to harass, humiliate and hurt individuals and communities. To avoid such actions, it is essential that we practice self-censorship.

Q. How should one deal with trolls?
The best way to deal with trolls is to ignore them. It is best to avoid arguments or give statements. Even while responding to trolls, it is necessary to provide valid data and facts. If nothing works, blocking the user can be an effective option.
 
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(This story appears in the 13 October, 2017 issue of Forbes India. You can buy our tablet version from Magzter.com. To visit our Archives, click here.)

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