And finally there are a few who write lengthy treatises such as this one to drive home the point
The advent of WhatsApp has driven the proverbial nail in Facebook’s coffin. Not quite the last nail, though.
There was a time when our day began with checking FB either to read, post, ‘like’ or comment on something. We felt elated if a post or a picture got the maximum likes — or dejected if not.
Now it begins and ends with WhatsApp. It’s become so addictive that we forget the existence of people around us, whom we can see, hear and touch. Instead, we spend all our time saying ‘Hi’ to someone in the digital space, comment on what they have posted, send greetings on festivals, birthdays, anniversaries or convey best wishes on their success or achievements or even express condolences if there is a bereavement — sometimes of people who are not even related to the group’s members.
There’s a friend who sends ‘Good Morning’ messages in several vernacular languages accompanied with images culled from all the groups that he is a member of. They all come in quick succession — ping, ping, ping. Others follow with their share of Good Mornings.
Next come a stream of cartoons, jokes, tidbits of information, health tips — when it comes to health matters, everyone is an expert.
The jokes and cartoons are received with smileys, emoticons and comments that include ‘lol’ and ‘rofl’. Seriously though, when was the last anyone actually rolled on the floor laughing? If anyone did, they sure need help from a psychiatrist.
Some people are good at remembering birthdays and anniversaries and wait until the clock strikes 12 at night to send the greetings. Others then follow, clogging the phone memory with greetings and virtual bouquets.
And, do we have to greet the same person in all the groups and on Facebook?
Just think about it.
While some comment or add some value to a post, others’ participation is limited to just liking it or replying with a smiley or any of those dozens of icons.
A few others seem to wake up when the whole world is ready to hit the bed. They respond to the day’s posts in retrospect in a chronological manner while some others say good morning, good afternoon, good evening and goodnight all in the same breath to make up for the lost day.
One of my friends seems to suffer from amnesia. He keeps posting jokes and other stuff, which we may have seen or read more than a year back. Then there’s this person who always likes to be one-up on everyone in the group and promptly forwards anything ‘new’ and ‘just out’, without realising you may have already seen it in some other group. When it comes to her though, she invariably responds with ‘yeah, good one — but I’ve already seen it’.
Some are so naive they believe anything that is dished out on social media — such as WhatsApp logo turning blue if you forward a msg to 10 groups so you can enjoy its service for free for lifetime; or your phone battery charge is extended or you will become a millionaire overnight if you forward a particular deity’s picture within three seconds.
I am curious to meet all those millionaires to see if they are still sending such messages to become multi-millionaires now.
Then there are the types who send an irrelevant post when others in the group are engaged in a serious debate. Either they have itchy fingers or have a penchant for being roadblocks.
Next, the narcissists. They don’t get tired of sending their pictures/selfies by the dozen; and expect ‘likes’ and comments from all — but are themselves miserly in reciprocating.
And there are some who feel compelled to comment on each and every post.
While WhatsApp is a social networking platform, there are anti-social elements who create a splinter group within a group to settle scores with others.
There’s also the philosophical type: A friend in one of my buddies group gets too Vedantic. He uses phrases such as ‘finding inner peace’, ‘exploring yourself’ or some management jargon even for trivial issues. It is like using a sledgehammer to swat a fly.
Looks like I am influenced by him and using a cliche to express my view.
And finally there are a few who write lengthy treatises such as this one to drive home the point.