Last night I dreamt of Bugs Bunny. Only, this time he said‚ “WhatsApp doc”. It was almost a nightmare and I jumped out of my bed with the sound of a WhatsApp message tinkle. I realised that someone added me to yet another group.
This was my 27th group starting from friends of animals to Hyderabad Hungama to soul sisters group. There were many unknown faces on each group randomly sharing, commenting and wishing everyone on anything but the purpose of the group.
For example I got Saibaba pictures in groups like save water and I never understood why. Initially it felt great like we all like to belong. But soon enough messages would pour in like rain and it was getting hard to keep track of conversations.
Added to this there is a constant need for people to share positive quotes. Some of them are ridiculously untrue and the intentions of those posting become questionable. Many of them randomly wish good morning with a bright sun shining picture or a bouquet of flowers. Now just imagine festival days.
From short videos on happy Holi to various other wishes, the sound of music goes on. Of course the option of muting notifications exists but then who would want to wake up to a thousand unread messages piling up like bills. From display of emoticons to talent shows of flowers from ‘my very own garden, this new medium certainly brings out the juvenile emotions of many.
I realise that WhatsApp groups are beyond mere info sharing or action plans. They are a hangout joint for most stressed out or lost souls. Maybe there are a few purposeful ones too which form during major events and occasions and disbanded after the task is complete, but it is quite an expenditure of emotional energy to be present and track the chaos that happens in a group. So the easiest way out for me now is to exit the group as soon as I am added. Not to push people away, more to add a bit more real connect in my life. Hope you all understand.
By the way, I plan to start a ‚ I don‘t like Whatsap groups ‚ group. Anyone interested?
— The writer is a popular TV show host, radio jockey, professional singer… and most importantly, a hardcore Hyderabadi)