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Rejoice! You Can Now Mute That Sexist Family WhatsApp Group Chat Forever

WhatsApp, forever mute feature

There has been no telling what kind of surprises each new day of 2020 will bring us. Waking up every morning seems like an exercise in anxiety because up until now, there has been more bad news than good. But it looks like the tide is slowly turning. The news we’re about to give you has the potential to reverse most, if not all, of your lockdown blues and set you on the path of, well, a happier life in general. Ready? Sit tight. *drum roll* WhatsApp has removed their one-year time cap on muting chats, extending it to ‘Always’. Yes, you read that right! That annoying family group chat, with its overload of ‘good morning’ forwards and sexist jokes can now be muted forever. A polite way of saying, “talk to the hand”, if you please.

Praise be to the social media divinities in Silicon Valley. The old adage ‘no dream is too big’ is apparently true.

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WhatsApp took to Twitter to announce this new feature, now available across the world for both iOS and Android users. The options on-screen for muting read eight hours, one week, or always.

Why The New Mute Feature Demands Some Celebration

Reports suggest that India is WhatsApp’s biggest market with 340 million users. However, leading the market has come on the back of some very pressing concerns for India. WhatsApp has unfortunately become a cesspool of negativity where misogyny, fake news, and hate content runs amok without any checks and balances in place. And the spillage of this virtual reality into the tangible one is coming at a high cost, affecting the communal, social, and political climate in the country all at once.

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We often don’t want to admit it, but these issues are way more severe than the annoyance that comes with pesky work messages pinging your screen every five minutes. This new mute feature will bring some relief to these problems, if not eradicate them completely. At least now, you can claim some peace of mind instead of having to fight with a sexist relative who refuses to see logic in feminism. Enable that mute button in their face.

Other New WhatsApp Features

In early October, WhatsApp had announced another modification to its interface, making searchability of old photos, chats, videos, etc. easier. Users can “search for a specific contact, then choose the type of media and add keywords to more powerfully look through past chats and messages.”

The feature claimed to streamline search options on the app. But if we’re being honest, its user experience is marred with complexity. To the uninitiated, this feature may seem wholly useless, not to mention rather daunting, especially since it clutters the area around the search bar. And without the assistance of online explainers, it may be difficult for many to figure out its utility.

Views expressed are the author’s own. 

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