I was a bit late in joining WhatsApp(WA) platform as I was keeping a strategic distance from all social networking sites and messaging applications for over four or five years or so. But then I realised that it is now indispensable and nearly a year ago I downloaded this application and started using it. Out of common messaging feature, status is also an extensively used function of this app. The official WhatsApp description of its status feature is that it “allows you to share text, photo, video and GIF updates that disappear after 24 hours.” However it doesn’t, as it should, states the reason for its use.
Over a year of using WA, I noticed that followings are the broad categories why status is being used
To show ones anger/ frustration which you can’t express directly: This I realised, when I had a little altercation with my younger brother. So what he did was he started posting some of the emotional messages as his status and I realised it was all targeted at me. 😀
There are other instances when I have observed that when people doesn’t like anything about anyone, they share some quotes or memes directed to the person in subtle way and I think many a times others also responds to them through their own status. So I don’t think the developer of WA would have ever thought that they are making a tool to harbour cold war. 😀
To show ones inner feelings: Many a times I found that people share many motivational or heart-breaking quotes as their status. I think at many a times both extremes are the reflection of the inner being and mental state of the individual. It’s my observation, and you are allowed to completely disagree, that those who have faced some sort of setbacks in their life, either they post motivational quotes or some painful narrations.
Sharing Breaking news: This is also one of the main content of the status of many people. One of my friend is staying in Delhi. She said that she read about the recent Delhi earthquake in one of her relative’s status but didn’t experience any earthquake. I reverted her that the days are not far away when you will read the status of earthquake first and then the earth will shake. Jokes apart, I have also experienced this that be it the announcement of lockdown or the unfortunate and untimely demise of Irrfan Khan, all I got to know through the status only.
Birthday Wishes/Other events: Oh my god! How could have I forget this? I think this should be ranked first. Not a single days goes by where we can’t see status pertaining to birthday and other wishes. One of my friend is so prolific in sharing his birthday of his acquaintance that I had to mute him 😛
Other reasons of sharing status would be quite obvious. People when go to places, celebrates some events, company asks them to put promotional activities as their status, finds good jokes etc. all are shared by them.
I tried to share my understanding on the psychology behind putting WA status. I am sure you all must have something else to share or you can also share your takeaways from this piece. Would love to hear them. Take care. Stay Safe.