WhatsApp, the more than popular instant messaging application, has revolutionized the way young people and society in general communicate, but it also poses great challenges in terms of misinterpretation of messages and the decrease in face-to-face interactions.
In today’s digital age, WhatsApp has become the most popular and widespread instant messaging application in society. According to Marketing4eCommercethis app It already has more than 2,000 million active users in the world.
This revolutionary platform has transformed the way of communicating, connecting people from different parts of the world in real time. However, while WhatsApp and WhatsApp Web have earned a reputation as stars in the messaging app landscape, they also It has generated a significant change in the way people relate to each other.
Reliance on this app to communicate has led to a decline in in-person conversations and direct contact, especially among young people.
The convenience of messaging and communicating through a screen has led to a reduction in verbal and non-verbal communication skills, which is already negatively affecting interpersonal relationships and the ability to understand and empathize with others. To all this we must add the addiction to mobile devices and social isolation, although that is another topic.
“As with any technological tool, it is important to find a healthy balance between the use of WhatsApp and direct personal interaction to ensure proper social development and effective communication”explains to Computer Hoy Andrea Castrillo, Head of Digital Innovation and Social Networks.
According to him Department of Prevention of Addictions of the Institute of Addictions of Madrid Salud, 21% of adolescents show risky use of instant messaging, 14.5% abuse and 8% dependency. In summary, 43.5% of adolescents present problematic behavior in the use of WhatsApp.
Challenges in communication by WhatsApp: misunderstandings, lack of social skills, lack of privacy and distrust
One of the disadvantages of communication through WhatsApp is the tendency to misinterpret messages. Due to the lack of non-verbal communication and tone of voice, written messages can be ambiguous and prone to different interpretations. The imagination begins to fly with a simple “Hello”.
“It can lead to confusion, misunderstanding and even conflict between people. The lack of context and the inability to read the emotions behind the words can make it difficult to accurately understand messages, which can result in argument at the very least.”adds the expert interviewed.
Real face-to-face communication problems
The dependence on WhatsApp as the main means of communication has contributed to the decreased one-on-one communication skills. “Young people find it very difficult to express their emotions, resolve conflicts or have deep and emotional conversations in person”adds Andrea Castrillo.
This virtual communication through messages can also generate a false sense of security and control of emotionswhich turns out to be false in reality and makes it difficult to practice communication skills between two effective people in everyday life situations.
A clear example is that almost supernatural ability to discuss via WhatsApp with certain people and being totally incapable of expressing yourself with the same ease in person.
The blue double check or remove the “last seen”
A distinctive feature of WhatsApp is the blue double check, which indicates that someone has read your message. This function can generate pressure and expectations of an immediate response, which often causes anxiety or stress in people -especially in adolescents-.
In addition, the option to hide the “last seen” can generate mistrust or doubts in relationships, since it can be interpreted as hiding information or avoiding it directly, completely breaking that privacy and respect.
You’re online, but you don’t reply to his messages
Another common situation is when someone is online but is not chatting with you or vice versa and this increases when it comes to your partnerwhich can generate insecurities and distrust in a totally healthy relationship.
“The ability to see when someone is online can lead to illogically negative assumptions or thoughts about why that person is not interacting with you. It is a constant control”Add.
It is undeniable that WhatsApp has become a vital application for almost everyone. Its benefits often outweigh the disadvantages mentioned above, but above all, face-to-face and honest communication should be promoted, fostering a healthy balance between virtual communication and face-to-face interactions.
Finally, in relationships as a couple, a certain amount of privacy and trust must be established above all through a clear dialogue prior to those messages or those hours that your partner does not respond to you and that above all is based on mutual respect.