Have you ever woken up in the morning with hundreds of WhatsApp notifications,
and wondered what your life has turned into?
In that half awake-half sleepy state, you decide to skim through important messages and ignore the dreaded forwards. Without realizing, you have become a member of multiple cults called “WhatsApp groups”. In these cults, you are not asked or convinced to become a part of them. Here you are simply added with no scope for questions and concerns. You can mute these cults, but you cannot quit them.
What if there is some important message that needs to be conveyed to every member of the group, or some plan to be made that requires everyone’s involvement? I agree WhatsApp groups are useful and practical when it comes to such situations. But seriously, how many times it is put to use for such purposes? No, I do not want pictures of sunrise, flowers, butterflies, trees, and beaches wishing me “Good morning” every single day of the year. I appreciate you taking out time to forward all the motivational quotes you come across. Then again, I have watched enough commencement speeches online to get motivated enough for my entire lifetime. Don’t even get me started on the pseudoscientific health tips. Yes, oranges have health benefits, but they aren’t going to make you disease-free. And for the love of God, please don’t forward the hoax messages creating a frenzy in the gullible and provoking eye-rolls from not so gullible.
I seem to be ranting too much. I agree having multiple WhatsApp groups means you have family and friends, who care about you and want to be in touch with you. When one has access to such powerful tools that keep you connected with your loved ones, one should definitely use it. Just take it easy on the forwards. Whatsapp messages are not peer-reviewed articles from scientific journals. They are not official government policies. Youth has a more intimate relationship with their smartphones than with their spouse/girlfriend/boyfriend. They are always holding their smartphones close to their hearts and staring at them endlessly. If this isn’t obsessive love, then I don’t know what is. Every single minute they get free from school or some soul-sucking job, they tend to spend it on their smartphones. So trust me when I say that they have seen that news already before you forwarded them its countless versions. And that inspiring and uplifting quote you forwarded, claiming to be spoken by some revered personality was actually written by a teenager on Tumblr. If you come across something, always confirm its source and authenticity before believing it and forwarding it. Knowledge spreads by sharing, but fake news has a speed of light.
We are lucky to witness and experience technological innovations occurring at such a raging pace. Why not use them as responsibly as we can? Sure, we all should have our fun with it, but not at the cost of others mental peace. I agree that someone’s annoyance is someone’s entertainment. And there is no rulebook to decide what is worth sharing (yet). All we can do is hope for the day when only important messages, witty jokes, and valid information get shared on these groups. Till then, keep tolerating the intolerable and focus on the good side of whatsapp.