In India September 24th, 2014 will always be remembered for the country’s first successful cheapest effort to enter Mars. Indian Space Research Organization’s (ISRO) most ambitious mission till date, the Mangalyaan (Mars Orbiter Mission probe) entered the red planet on the day, bringing all round cheer in the country.
Thanks to the brilliant scientists of ISRO and the Chairman Dr. K Radhakrishnan, India joined US, the European Space Agency and the former Soviet Union in the elite club of Martian explorers. China and Japan have failed.
Their isn’t any doubt on the country’s achievement but subsequently something else has also happened. The moment the space mission entered the red planet, a new Twitter and Facebook account was born for the same.
Social media has been one of the mediums for ISRO as a communication channel all throughout the Mars mission but the new social media account specially on Twitter has won many hearts. For example the below reply to Curiosity Rover fetched 12K retweets and 8K favourites. Not to forget the massive online coverage by the media for the cool reply.
Howdy @MarsCuriosity ? Keep in touch. I’ll be around.
— ISRO’s Mars Orbiter (@MarsOrbiter) September 24, 2014
As of today the Twitter account has 19 original tweets and 136K followers; on Facebook the page has more than 574K likes.
Seeing these numbers and engagement in every tweet, social media gurus must be vouching that it has to be the hand of some expert with creative brilliance. Well the answer is that the account isn’t handled by experts but young guns. Often stated by experts to think twice before handing your social media accounts to kids, ISRO Chairman K Radhakrishnan has handed this job to three young scientists.
The social media accounts has three voices – the first one is a 26-year-old scientist who studies the cosmos, the other one is 32 year old and the third a little over two years younger. All the three handle the social media presence within easy reach of Dr. Radhakrishnan at the Indian Space Research Organization’s Bangalore headquarters in Antriksh Bhavan. “I want them to have access to me and the scientific secretary at all times,” said the ISRO Chairman.
According to the Chairman, other than the general social media dos and don’ts prescribed by the government of India, the three scientists were told to apply their creativity to the task liberally. Seeing the tweets one would dare to doubt the creative brilliance of the young scientists.
What sorcery is this? Get your 3D glasses to look at Mars the way I do! pic.twitter.com/eWBN7MaBMS
— ISRO’s Mars Orbiter (@MarsOrbiter) September 30, 2014
The view is nice up here. pic.twitter.com/VmAjNI76lm
— ISRO’s Mars Orbiter (@MarsOrbiter) September 25, 2014
The bravest of us all @NASAVoyager, having ventured out the farthest. We’re here for you.
— ISRO’s Mars Orbiter (@MarsOrbiter) September 26, 2014
He further stated that the young scientists take turns for their work on social media and generally animate all social media conversations that revolve around the country’s space mission. ISRO is going to continue the social media activities of MOM and also plan to maintain a similar active online presence when the GSLV Mark 3 (their 4-tonne Geosynchronous Launch Vehicle) is cast into space later this year.
However, the names of the three young scientists haven’t been disclosed due to ISRO’s communications guidelines. Nevertheless, ISRO’s Mars Orbiter has definitely set a new benchmark for everybody on social media.