20 March 2013 / by Radmila Gurkova

What's up with WhatsApp?!


WhatsApp is an instant messaging application that is changing the world of social relations. And it's free!

"It's great technology; it facilitates interaction and the exchange of information in real time," said Enrique Garcia Huete, a professor of psychology from Madrid. The main novelty with respect to other communication channels, is that WhatsApp displays the user’s information; you can see if the user is online, their chosen profile picture and, most of all, whether or not the user has read your message.

Unfortunately, WhatsApp is also causing family crises and tension among friends. Suspicion arises when the sender of the message sees that the receiver has read the message but does not instantly respond. Unlike unanswered emails and phone calls, instant messaging applications require immediate response. "This is the perfect channel to enhance relations in the first phases of infatuation, but then it can lead to problems if one person becomes obsessed,” says Garcia Huete.




  •  What do you think of WhatsApp and other instant messaging applications?

  • How often do you use WhatsApp/instant messaging?

  • How important is it for you to communicate with your friends/family via intstant messaging?

  • Has communication via WhatsApp ever caused problems in your social relationships (with friends/family/significant other)?

  • How do you react when you don't receive an immediate response?

  • What are the advantages of using WhatsApp?

  • What are the disadvantages?

  • Do you think there is a difference between communicating via WhatsApp, email, and phone calls? What is it?

  • How do you think applications like WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter affect the younger generation?


INSTANT MESSAGING: A form of communication that offers quick transmission of text-based messages from sender to receiver.

EXCHANGE: The act of giving one thing and receving another.

ENHANCE: Intensify the quality, value and performance of something.

REAL TIME:  The actual time in which an event occurs.

CHANNELS: A medium for communicating data from one location to another.

CRISES: The plural of crisis.

ARISE: When a problem or situation becomes apparent.

UNANSWERED: Not responded to.


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