Forwarding Festival Wishes Syndrome

09 Oct,2019


By Sanjeev Kotnala


Is the Digital Termite disturbing your festivities? I would believe that just like my WhatsApp timelines your timeline was also overcrowded with Ashtami and Dassera wishes rendered in different ways and formats.

Sending greetings to near and dear ones has been a tradition. Traditionally, calling your friends and relatives and meeting them has been a norm. I fear the coming generations may remember it as a useless ritual. And someday the ritual of forwarding greetings will die its early death. Darwin’s theory of evolution will strike again.

Our numbness to the festival wishes and greeting delivered in the most non-personalised way is leading toward extinction of that excitement and collective euphoria during festivities.

Why go when you can call.

Why call when you can WhatsApp.

Why send an individual message when you can broadcast to the list.

Why even bother about creating when you can forward the greetings.

In the process, we are merely loosing out the purpose and relevance of these festivals. We are getting slowly but surely desensitised to festivities, emotions and collective euphoria of celebrations. We are ourselves getting nearer to what we express and explain as the REAL ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE WITH TEMPLATIED EMOTIONS.


The greetings are carelessly forwarded. Some of the messages are simple and do their job of exchanging greetings.

Some messages are evolved explanation and thematic nudge for you to understand the meaning and apply it in your life. Rest be assured the sender neither complies with the message or stand guarantee to the social reaction.

Some then try to be witty. These are the one where the audience may get again involved with the message, forward it and not remember who sent it.

Some of the forwarded messages try to be the Yellow Rose on Valentine’s Day. They try too hard to stand out. Unfortunately, in the process, they no longer remain a greeting and morph into some intellectual Gyaan on the platform.


The era of cut-paste from various formats and platforms on the digital ecosystem is leading to forward with a lack of patience and engagement. We are busy playing fastest finger first, and yet we do not remember which group and the friends wished us and who did not.

It does not matter.

Because you still call people who matter.

It would be reflective of the real network and touchpoints in your life.

One can safely hide behind silly quotes like “People who matter don’t mind, and people who mind do not matter”. However, we feel disengaged and uninvolved with people who fail to enclose them in their ecosystem of information, greetings, sharing’s and invites.

In the current era of non-evaluative forwards and cut-paste, people should not mind. Touch your heart and say, which side do you fall. You do mind, and you matter or You do not mind, and you do not matter.

Remember we can not hold our so-called hectic busy overloaded lifestyle for this slowly creeping cultural numbness. Machines and platforms are not responsible for it. If there is anyone accountable, it is you. If there is someone who can still turn the tide- it is you.


Here are some of the Dassera greetings that landed in my WhatsApp timeline. Check how many greetings in your timelines are from the numerous bouncing boards across groups and individual well-wishers.

Your numbness is increasing.

Now you easily swipe/click/ignore greetings that do not engage you and have zero impact in your life.

The sender is not expecting replies to every greeting.

His dharma is to send/forward the greetings.

The sender is in the game of just sending and ticking a box of having wished people who during the day will safely ignore or flick the greeting out. An excellent creative message will find engagement with the communication and not necessarily the sender. I presume that was not something you planned.

I would like to know and see messages that someone took exceptional care and pain in crafting it, especially for you?



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