The past 20 years have seen the growth of the internet across the World. This growth has also been seen in Pakistan. Not only do more Pakistanis have an internet connection today but more Pakistanis are hosting and running their own websites leading to a sharp increase in the growth of services such as web design. Today thousands of Pakistani websites have sprung up covering themes such as music, gupshup, news or entertainment. Many of these websites exclusively promote Pakistani artists without an added cost to these artists.
Where television fails the internet steps in
While even our music channels such as ARY Musik and Aag succumb to the phenomenon of Indian Music a movement of its own has been started by websites catering to members of the Pakistani community that hunger for Pakistani talent, thirst for the voice of new Pakistani musicians and have a firm belief in supporting their own artists.
When the old television channels that once were the greatest promoters of Pakistani talent succumb to the phenomenon of ‘Bollywood’ it is only natural that these individuals starved for Pakistani talent will turn to means other than them to fulfill their needs. This is where Pakistani websites have stepped in to fill the demand.
Most of these websites operate without earning any money from ad sense and if so without a profit while being operational only due to the interest of the administrators in not just maintaining the website for themselves but also to promote Pakistan. In many cases the owners of these websites believe the local entertainment and music industry deserves to be promoted and work towards this goal without gaining any personal benefit. This is clearly the case for every Pakistani website that has a library of underground music whether it be lesser known sites such as Pakium.com or the famous Pakmusic.com which is always known to be starving for funds.
Despite this these sites have continued popping up and with the growth of these websites the internet has become a major part of the way in which Pakistanis gain information especially concerning the entertainment industry.
Connecting the Overseas Pakistanis
Although locals may expect Pakistanis residing overseas to stay in the flow it is often an extremely difficult task for them. This is so because they often can’t listen to the same radio or watch the same television programs that their counterparts in Pakistan manage to. This can often result in them being out of the loop.
Nevertheless being outside the country many Overseas Pakistanis develop a very keen sense of identity. They consider it a duty to follow up on everything going on in the Entertainment Industry in Pakistan whether it is a fashion show, a concert, some highly acclaimed television programs such as Coke Studio and Living on the Edge or new musical releases by Pakistani artists.
The role of websites is great when considering that they have become a bastion for the promotion of Pakistani talent. However for those who are living outside Pakistan the role of these websites comes as an absolute blessing. Having no access to the same newspapers, magazines, television programs and radio channels their counterparts in Pakistan have access to the overseas Pakistanis turn to one of the only means that are available to them to stay updated. The internet.
Promoting talent without adding cost to the artists
Thousands of Pakistani Underground bands are still waiting to see the sunshine of fame. They continually release new singles, do gigs and perform concerts simply for their own passion for music while getting almost nothing in return.
Often seeking a career in music has its own costs. Many of the artists don’t have enough money in the first place to support their music needs. Omer Nadeem is a brilliant example. He clearly has talent however he does not have enough financial power to pursue his musical dreams.
Websites have a vital role in the promotion of such artists and see the individual not for the money that can be milked out of him but as a talented individual seeking to make a career in music. Regardless of the financial and other problems the artists may face websites promote the artists work without asking them for the cash. They are a source of immense promotion for the artist.
Keeping Pakistanis updated through a superior median
Customarily for the past 20 year’s television and before that radio and newspapers had always been the more common way for Pakistani people to remain updated. Though all these medians still remain most Pakistanis now believe that the internet is one of the most major ways in which they get information. Today Pakistan has about 18.5 Million internet users most of whom comprise of people younger than 30 years of age.
Pakistanis turning to websites to fulfill their music needs is a rising trend that has been seeing its growth for a long time now. This growing preference for the internet is because it allows media to be downloaded onto the computer and used whenever the downloader pleases to. Another reason is being able to access information at any time one pleases. A single search on Google gives access to thousands of pieces of information about a single topic. This is why thousands of Pakistani websites have popped up over the internet and are visited by thousands of Pakistanis daily.
The future of Pakistani websites
When the television first came it caused a massive effect on people as they were able to see live coverage of events for the first time. Later advertisers learned that it was a brilliant way to market their products or services to people. The internet grew in much the same way. People realized that information could be shared on the internet in a different way from television. Then advertisers realized the benefits of the internet and it became a bustling hub of commercial activity as each successful company created a website.
The future use of websites for the sharing of information, media and news related to Pakistan is expected to rise over the years until another median overtakes the internet for the sharing of information amongst the Pakistani youth. Today websites are the ultimate median Pakistanis use to gain information and internet usage is definitely growing.