Escape room
The Music Maker opinion

Escape room

Columnist Peter Edgerton has been encouraged by friends to sign up to WhatsApp. To help him decide if he should, he's drawn up a list of the pros and cons...

Peter Edgerton /


Friday, 21 June 2024, 17:24

Opciones para compartir

There they were then, Batman and Robin, trapped in a room with the walls quite literally closing in on them. Not only that, Catwoman had fiendishly plastered said walls with spikes. Things were looking decidedly dicey for the Dynamic Duo by the end of the episode.

This spiky wall scene is one of my earliest childhood memories - watching the horror unfold on a rented black and white TV.

It all came flooding back to me this week when, on four occasions during the same day, I mentioned the fact that I don't have WhatsApp. All four of the people concerned, told me how important it is to have the application although they all became a bit vague when drilling down into specifically why. It feels like the spiky walls are closing in and I'm pressured at every turn to join the club, so to help me decide what to do, I'm going to write a list of pros and cons.

Righty-ho, the pros. First, and most importantly, if you get WhatsApp, everyone will stop nagging you to get WhatsApp. Secondly, you can hold your phone like a piece of toast near your mouth and record an endless monologue for some poor sap without the inconvenience of being interrupted or disagreed with. This makes you look very attractive to the casual observer. Another advantage is that you can get a true perspective on the current state of your life when you look at the list of groups and sub-groups you're beholden to, such as 'Family' and 'Family Without Annoying Uncle Dave'. You will also be reminded constantly of your holidays - like that cruise you went on in 2015 - because Paco and Teresa will send frequent messages and blurred photos of a drunken game of quoits to a group you optimistically called 'Cruise Friends'.

And the cons? Oh, my word. Well, falling ever further from speaking personally to another human being for a start. It's so much easier to ping a message, especially if it's something a bit awkward to say. "Hi Babes - this isn't wrkng out aftr six yrs. Lt's leave it. Soz. :) :)."

There's also that tick control system thing. I'm not clear on the details, although I do know that two blue ticks means that the recipient has read your message - well, that's just creepy. It's unclear if three blue ticks means your message has been read and the recipient has tossed their phone across the room in contempt. Maybe four blue ticks means that it's been read and the recipient is screaming 'Leave me in peace, Cruise Friend!' at his phone.

There's no contest here, is there? Let's face it, even the pros on that list mostly sound like cons.

In my heart, I know the right thing to do is to carry on calling people personally and sending emails and text messages occasionally, but the spiky walls are closing in and I'm feeling the pressure.

The good news is, though, in the very next episode after the one described above, Batman and Robin escaped.

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