A Millennial’s Guide to Dealing with Whatsapp Forwards and Greetings

Are you one of those Indian youngsters grappling with excessive forwards on Whatsapp? Well, you’re not alone! As per the Wall Street Journal, millions of Indians are part of this daily ritual. To top it off, this trend isn’t just restricted to the most popular messaging app WhatsApp but can be found on other apps like Facebook Messenger and Hike. Here’s how we as millennials deal with it.

This daily routine peaks between 8 am every morning and can last well up to noon. There is a high number of good night messages that may arrive in the evenings as well. This constantly keeps the flow of spam messages to your phone throughout the day. If you happen to be a part of a public group at some point in time, you may also come across people who end up saving your number and add you to their broadcast list. Wherein you now receive an additional image(s) filled with information you may never need in addition to the greetings that you receive.

That being said, this sending of greetings is invariably an important ritual that most middle and old aged (and sometimes even the young) indulge in actively with much passion. This serves both as an icebreaker as well as a medium to remain connected (read as: not sound monotonous). However, as a millennial, this is a highly annoying thing due to two reasons. Firstly, this fills up the storage on our phone faster than we can clear the clutter. Secondly, the people who send these messages happen to be the first chats on the top which pushes the important chat threads towards the bottom. So you have to spend an extra minute or two trying to find the right chat through the search box. Sigh.


What’s the best way to get around this? The most effective way to nip this issue in the bud is to directly block the person from sending any messages whatsoever in the future. However, this is not viable because that will be both rude and refrain you from messaging them when you need to¯\_(ツ)_/¯  


The other option is to mute chats and opt-out for notifications. This is applicable for WhatsApp and addresses my second problem. Although this will drastically reduce the number of chat heads on your phone it still wouldn’t prove enough to save your precious storage space (especially if you are using one of the entry-level smartphones that come without expandable storage).

Clear Chats & No Auto Downloads!

To solve the issue of diminishing storage space, you could opt for deleting unwanted photos and images (saving a few, just in case you fancy spamming someone at some point in the future). Alternatively, you could switch off auto-download from the respective messaging app settings. Facebook Messenger comes with media auto-download switched off by default. You will have to opt out for WhatsApp though. In case you are being tagged in such photos along with Deepak Sharma and 120 others on Facebook, you can remove the tags individually or prevent the user from tagging you altogether, here’s how.

Discipline. Yes, it is your fault 😛

That is both issues addressed, however as a wise man once said – prevention is better than cure. If you happen to get added to a family group or any group in general, it is best to quit it, if there is no immediate purpose that the group serves. We all have been added to groups relating to planning a surprise party or a baby shower at some point in time. Post that event, the group will exist and possibly harbor the ‘good morning’ ritual after a while. Here are some tricks to get out of it.

When you are added to an insignificant group, the best time to exit is right after you have been added. This is usually the time when everyone is being added and you may be able to sneak out without anyone noticing. On the other hand, as in the previous case, if it is a group chat that requires you to stay and has then run its course of time, the best way to quit is when there is an ongoing conversation. With this, you could sneak out between the message threads. Although this is not especially foolproof and there is a chance you could come across as rude, but it may be at the cost of reduced spam messages. If you do not want to play your odds (or you are a prey of rather emotionally sensitive relatives), you could always switch off downloading media and mute chats and wait for that moment someone decides to kick you out of the group.

To give you a perspective of how big this trend has become, WhatsApp revealed that upwards of 20 billion New Year messages were sent this year, which is a record in its own. If you have been plagued by this issue, feel free to use these techniques.

Got more tips? Share with us in the comments below.

Image Credits: (Yes, such a site exists, alongside many more!)