Orkut Dies. Advani Still Alive.

Google has finally seen sense and shut down a social network which nobody was using. No, it’s not Google+. No, it’s not Google Buzz either. That died a pretty early death, like Zimbabwean cricketing ambitions. It is Orkut. Yes, the social network which was a breeding ground for people wH0 wR!T3 lYk d1s has finally been taken off the ventilator. Indians everywhere will reminisce fondly about how they wrote scrap after scrap to pretty girls hoping that at least one of them would respond to their ‘fraandship reqest’ while waiting impatiently for the jpeg of the ‘Hot Mallu Aunty’ to load in the minimized window. Unless the phone rang and reset the internet connection, at which point they screamed at the dial-up internet modem as if they were an Indian parent and the modem was their daughter who had decided to marry someone belonging to a different caste.

Orkut was apparently developed by a Google employee who named the website after himself. Good thing he wasn’t named Pedophile Naziloversson then. It was a roaring success, especially in India and Brazil, but went downhill quick and ended up as a liability for the company. If you think about it, this is exactly why TCS doesn’t let its engineers work on independent projects. Sure, it could be a hit, but they’d end up closing it down anyway. It’s a better use of the employees’ time or Optimal Utilization of Human Resources in IIM speak, to let them sit on client calls or prepare for CAT.

Orkut included several of the standard social networking features, but a popular one allowed the users could change the colour of their profile page. This feature was evidently developed after a night of LSD abuse and has spawned gullible fools who still think that clicking on a link will make their Facebook turn gold or red from the standard blue. Hey, the day Facebook turns red; it’ll be because George R. R. Martin took over the company. It also featured groups like ‘Proud Indians’, ‘Proud Ghatkoparites’ and ‘Proud to be B+ Blood Group’. Being proud of your blood group? Who takes pride in something they had absolutely nothing to do with? Who wears upon their hearts trivial achievements which were never theirs to begin with? Ohhh… well that explains this:


It also featured scraps through which married men with 5 kids asked for friendship from 16-year old girls, hoping that this friendship would lead to you know … wink wink. In reality, the scrap was ignored and the man was forced to get up from his computer because he had to change his youngest kid’s diaper for the third time in an hour. A simple lesson can be gained from this: If you’re an older man and want to successfully hit on underage chicks, you’d better be a famous movie director. (Polanski, Woody Allen, Mahesh Bhatt, you get the idea).


But, in all fairness, some blame for this mentality does lie with Shah Rukh Khan for coining the ‘Pyaar Dosti Hai’ phrase. It gave false hope to the millions of young boys in this country that recharging a girl’s prepaid balance somehow meant that she HAD to sleep with you. Their dreams came crashing down when the same girl married a rich NRI and the forever-alones consoled themselves by downing 6 pegs of Old Monk, Googling ‘Dard-E-Shayari’ and sending the most sad ones as SMS forwards to their entire phonebook. It would seem like a sorry sight in many ways but then, they should have seen it coming if they were going to take life advice from SRK, that guy never practices what he preaches


Another thing people loved about Orkut was a list which showed which people had visited their profile. A guy in Bhopal apparently got marriage cards printed after seeing that his Orkut crush had visited his profile 5 times in the past month and later burned them on finding out that the account actually belonged to a man. If Section 377 did not exist, this would’ve still been a successful love story. The visitor feature is sorely missed by Orkutiyas even after they have migrated to Facebook. They still pray for the same and click on the spam links saying ‘Who Visited Your FB Profile? Get Results Now’ with the same hope that the villagers in Lagaan had upon seeing clouds. They literally made a song and dance about it. Unfortunately, the link almost always has a virus which then starts generating auto-posts from their account forcing the poor user to post a status saying how they ‘accidentally’ clicked a bad link. Hey, Reality Check: No one does such things by accident. They do it because deep down, they really want to. That’s like Dolores Umbridge saying that she accidentally became a tyrannical despot or Sajid Khan saying that he accidentally made Humshakals, a film which even Al-Qaeda says is terrifying.


Yes, sadly Orkut is dead and even more sadly, Rakhi Sawant isn’t. Social networking has been one area where an IT giant like Google has not been able to get a foothold. It is like that 11 year-old kid who gets a 100% in Math and Science but barely scrapes through in Art & SUPW. It has tried and failed repeatedly and now is left only with Google+ which is solely used by politicians (and Arvind Kejriwal) to host self-aggrandizing and self-congratulatory Hangouts. But, hey don’t be too hard on yourself, Google. Yes, there are fewer Orkut users than there are Aadhar Card users (Not counting Bangladeshis) and even fewer Google+ users, but you have to admit Orkut was fairly popular in the past. You know just like this guy :


Let us sit back and salute the legacy of Orkut, whose users eventually moved to Facebook and posted updates like ‘Anu is feeling satisfied – with Ravi and 6 others’(Sounds dirty, doesn’t it?) and made it their own personal mission to prove that their lives are better than everyone else’s because they finally got that new car or they got a new dog who they named Chiranjeevi Boxer(True Story). It is at times like these that you truly understand the tenet of Hinduism which says that the body is temporary, but the soul is eternal. Quite similarly, the social network is temporary, but Orkutiya spirit is eternal.


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