WhatsApp Question

A famous Spanish writer wants me to call her on WhatsApp. I’ve never used WhatsApp. Does anybody know how it works? Is it like a regular phone conversation? She sent me a phone number, so I guess it is. Or not?

I’m panicking right now.

19 thoughts on “WhatsApp Question

  1. No need to freak out, WhatsApp is a messaging app intended for phones that is very popular in Europe. I use it to communicate with my brothers and sisters in Germany all the time. It’s pretty secure and easy to use. You can use it for chat, voice and video and it uses your cell-phone number to allow you to look up others. Very safe and quite easy. I recommend it.


  2. If I may suggest, perhaps watch a youtube video or something about how to sign up to and use teh app, since watching all of the steps should make it appear easy (which it is) and help you be relaxed.


  3. May not your husband help you with WhatsApp installation? I always ask my brother to help me with tech.

    Am shocked you don’t have WhatsApp already.

    In this year of covid, the app became crucial for a teacher’s job in Israel since one keeps in touch with students via it. Every class one teaches has its own math (or other subject) WhatsApp group, where a teacher gives announcements, students ask him and each other questions. One also sends materials there despite the existence of school provided web system since students access WhatsApp group quicker and easier. It’s not like a teacher puts confidential information like grades there, so no harm…

    WhatsApp also helps in finding a job since there are teachers’ groups created for this purpose, but the best job ads are in usual teachers’ groups like the group for math teachers in central Israel. Without WhatsApp one really hurts one’s chances.

    We also use WhatsApp to phone relatives in Russia for free since it’s a call via Internet. Previously, each minute cost a lot via usual phone. Naturally, I could also use WhatsApp to call somebody in USA or any other country.

    I have so many WhatsApp groups on my phone that it’s hard to count them all, but they are most useful.

    Hands down WhatsApp is the most crucial app I ever had.


    1. ” the app became crucial for a teacher’s job in Israel”

      Sounds like a dystopian nightmare…. I still use email and a message thing in microsoft teams (which is what my institution provided). But I only use that at the computer. One of my lines in the sand is this: I refuse to use a phone to do my job. Nope. No way.


      1. // Sounds like a dystopian nightmare…. One of my lines in the sand is this: I refuse to use a phone to do my job.

        You and Clarissa are university profs which is very different from being a school teacher.

        The number of students you teach, their age, your role and so on are very different.

        Only very religious Haredi teachers, who refuse to have a phone with Internet, don’t use WhatsApp. At least, among people I know.


        1. All they would need to provided you with is a work smartphone with a separate work phone number.

          I also don’t like the idea of having work contacts and family contacts on the same phone. Especially since WhatsApp is tied to your phone number.


    2. I know it’s popular in other countries. But here I don’t know anybody who uses it. For communication with students we have an LMS through the university. I wouldn’t communicate with students through anything that’s not provided by the university. It’s weird that people agree to take the process to an outside app. Why is the education system in Israel outsourcing LMS to Facebook? That’s kind of disturbing.


      1. It’s not ideal, especially when it comes to WhatsApp. One thing to be aware of, if you swap phone numbers with somebody and you both install WhatsApp and give Contact permissions on your phone (which most people do), you will immediately pop up as possible WhatsApp contact. Your WhatsApp picture and any status will be visible to anyone in your contact’s list.

        Say you put up a family picture or a controversial status on your WhatsApp profile, anyone at work you swapped numbers with will see it.


        1. That’s kind of disturbing.

          They really should be using learning management systems for that. I don’t want any communication with my students to happen outside the official LMS.

          I find it weird when professors have students on their FB, for instance. I don’t get why anybody would want to.


      2. // Why is the education system in Israel outsourcing LMS to Facebook?

        There are moodle-like official systems, but for day-to-day work WhatsApp is extremely helpful.

        // Your WhatsApp picture and any status will be visible to anyone in your contact’s list.

        I know, that’s why I do not have a WhatsApp picture in the first place.

        Don’t know what is meant by status exactly. Some people put sayings in their WhatsApp account description and everyone can see them. I don’t do that.

        Clarissa, if you have never used the app, it may be harder to get what it means. The moment you try, you’ll see.

        One can use it both for work (which uni profs don’t need to do) and as a personal app for connecting with family. It’s not like FB but more like an email in letting one communicate with others w/o my mother seeing what I send anyone else and vice versa.


  4. The writer probably asked for you to call her via WhatsApp because it results in less or no phone charges for her. The sound quality is variable.

    What messaging apps do you use to communicate with your relatives?


      1. You are secretly a West Wing character?
        You can Skype and Zoom on the smartphone to give your arms and sense of balance a workout.


  5. Just to mention that you can’t call someone for the first time without giving Zuckerberk access to all your contact data from the phone. It’s secure if you trust arsebook


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