Approximately 39% of the total world's population use the internet everyday, which comes out to be 2.7 billion internet users according to the International Telecommunications Union 2013. And how many people does it take to start any sensation on the internet? The rule of 80/20 fits appropriately over here. The 80/20 principle says that 80% of the effects are a result of 20 % of the causes. In other words, 80 % of the work will be done by 20% of the participants.
Therefore, it would not be wrong to say that any message, book, product, fad or just about anything, becomes popular simply due to some 20% of the people which are rightly coined as the Mavens and the Connectors by Malcolm Gladwell in his famous bestseller 'The Tipping Point'. The Mavens are the ones who have the knowledge and social skills to start a word-of-mouth epidemic whereas the Connectors know a large number of people and through their high inter-personal skills; they connect other people with the world. They are the social glue who spread the word across the globe.
But who are the Mavens, responsible for creating a stir in the digital space? These are those people who have the social skills to start a trend over the internet. Sometimes the famous personalities themselves, mostly unknowingly, end up starting an epidemic in the digital space and sometimes it's any common man who, by way of his knowledge bank and social skills, uses any famous personality in order to create a phenomenon in the digital space.
How come 'Joker' became synonymous with Anushka Sharma? As soon as the The Koffee with Karan episode in which Anushka Sharma was the guest was telecast on the national TV, there were some Mavens, followed by the Connectors, who quickly earned her the sobriquet of 'Joker' lips and made her a butt of many Twitter and Facebook jokes, and then there was no stopping to the memes being shared all over the digital space. Such was the sensation over the internet and text messages that Anushka Sharma had no option but to post a letter on Twitter in order to calm down the twitteratti and Facebook posts which were going crazy about her 'lip-fix'.
Another personality, who is a household name now- Kapil Sharma, has given the internet users a precious lingo 'Babaji Ka Thullu'. He has changed the way people comment on each others' photos, statuses, or simply interact with each other over SMS, Whats app, Twitter et al. It won't be surprising if we happen to see sometime in the near future, 'Babaji ka Thullu' next to 'Like and Comment' tabs on social media, which is rather amusing.
And then came the turn of Rahul Gandhi. The famous or not-so-famous interview of Rahul Gandhi by Arnab Goswami gave everyone, who witnessed it, a dose of laughter. But it just didn't end there in eighty minutes. Rahul Gandhi created a buzz in the digital space as well which continued for days to go. Be it memes, videos, photos, jokes; everywhere people were sharing their views and opinions about the interview in one way or the other. It was as if people wanted to scream out loud to the world that they too had watched the interview (indirect way to prove that they watch news) and very much understood the phenomenon trending then.
And of course, who doesn't remember the famous Alok Nath and his recent connection with the digital world? Such was the impact of the phenomenon that Alok Nath finally spoke about it in an interview to The Times of India, 'My kids told me about it, and then some friends started calling wondering if I was unwell. I checked some of the jokes myself and found them to be hilarious though I wondered about those who had so much time to invest on me (Laughs).'
All of this definitely proves one thing that no matter how hard the PRs of the celebrities try to make their public image flawless and distant from becoming a joke for the common mass, there will be some Mavens ready to break the barriers and create a stir in the digital space by using the celebrities who become victims to such a mockery owing to their own deeds (sadly). The Mavens simply start the fire through their extraordinary social skills and information bank and the Connectors through their large network of friends and acquaintances spread the word everywhere like a snowball.
So, it will not be wrong to say that once the Mavens, the Connectors and the Personalities get together, there is no stopping to the epidemic to be caused in the digital world!