WASHINGTON DC —
Most Zimbabweans say they are aware that some people use the social media to engage in love affairs, which at times lead to strong marriages.
In an informal survey on WhatsApp, respondents said there are many relationships being shaped by the social media like Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp.
Respondent Mupanga Albert said social media have been used to search for a lost lover and dating. “Last year I attended one engagement party of a couple who met on a WhatsApp prayer group.”
For Jonathan of Harare, social media have been a blessing. “I just did that and it’s working. The relationship is stable. I stay in Harare and she stays in Bulawayo. It’s been five months now.
According to respondent Short Ncube some strong relationships have been nurtured through social media. “Well, it is good because it promotes globalisation and relationship among different people worldwide.”
His views are echoed by Carrington, who said, “The changing in global communications has resulted in major changes in social interaction. This has eroded our rich culture in marriages like getting hooked up in a relationship through aunties.
“These online interactions some have resulted in serious crimes like human trafficking, but others are having good relationships through the social media.”
Magugu Bernard said, “I met my wife on WhatsApp through a social group chat.”
Another respondent said dating on social media is not a sin. “It all depends with the attitude of both partners. If they are serious they are likely to be successful. I am one such person who got married through social media.”
But respondent Arnold said, “As for me I don't trust hooking or dating on social media because I see them as a means used by those who are promiscuous. I go for a straight forward relationship.”
A respondent, who identified himself as Joel, noted that “marriages associated with social media are fragile, full of irregularities, lies and all sorts of unfaithfulness.”
A taxi driver said someone posted his mobile number on social media with a message indicating that “I was a girl looking for a man”
“You can't believe it, l have blocked 260 contacts of men on that WhatsApp looking for a date,” said the man, who identified himself as Obert.
Here is what one of the respondents, who declined to be identified, said about these relationships.
Social commentator Thandeko Zinti Mnkandla said such relationships are now common on social media.