There are many reasons to be circumspect about how social media influences, either openly or from behind one mask or another, our quickly-changing world.
The election of Trump and Britain’s Brexit vote are, from one perspective, victories for hidden hands. Versions of that nudge-nudge puppetry are obvious as the pandemic spreads.
Wild, hinge-eyed theories, one suggesting the pandemic is a Chinese plot for world domination and that Nancy Pelosi — who was 80 yesterday — is an agent in that subterfuge, are given credence.
Yet, in the midst of the greatest immediate threat facing us, social media, or at least a large portion of it, is having a good game.
It has become if not the world’s sitting room then maybe its lounge where like-minded souls can meet and help steer each other through uncharted waters.
There are sharks in those waters but they are far outnumbered by inspiring footage showing community solidarity, especially from the apartment balconies of locked-down Spain and Italy.
Just as the pandemic underlines old, maybe neglected values, it also underlines the great, mysterious and redemptive power of music — the vocabulary of defiance and solidarity reassurance too, used by Spain and Italy’s balcony choirs.
That so many of the world’s great musicians and singers have stepped into the world lounge to try to reassure and cheer us all with their music is reaffirming, welcome and powerful.
Tune in, it should cheer you up.