Posted by sean on June 6, 2020 at 8:20 pm in Internet with No Comments


Before I start this blog post, I would first like to make it clear to anyone who knows me, that not one part of it is aimed at them. Therefore, please don’t take any of it personally – read it as the tongue-in-cheek post of which it was intended…

Since the country has gone into lockdown, one of the things everyone seems to be chatting about is a piece of software called Zoom. It seems to me that people appear to be discussing Zoom more than the COVID-19 virus responsible for this bloody mess!

If there is anyone reading this who doesn’t know what Zoom is, may I start by congratulating you on not being sucked into the national obsession. I am rather surprised you exist – I was saying to Claire just a few days ago, that I believed we were the only two people left in the UK not to be using the sodding thing! You are the third member in a very elite group of individuals.

Zoom is apparently a tool which allows you to make video calls to other Zoom users over the internet, using your computer, tablet or mobile phone. Wow! This new technology is incredible – it’s almost as if Skype hasn’t been in existence since 2003…

YET ANOTHER MEANS OF COMMUNICATION THAT PRE-DATES ZOOM.

If I want to chat to people over the internet, I will type what I want to say, using software such as WhatsApp (which, by the way, also handles video calls). If I wish to hear a friend or loved one’s voice, I have discovered an amazing gadget known as the telephone!

For those of you concerned about the spread of coronavirus, there is no evidence to suggest that WhatsApp or a telephone aids the transmission of the virus. Unless you borrow a phone from a patient suffering from Covid19 and lick their handset.

You may be wondering what I have against video calls. While I generally like to stay in contact with those close to me, I always feel uneasy looking at a screen featuring whoever I am speaking to, especially with my face positioned slap bang in the corner.

I find myself not knowing where to look. Do I talk into the camera lens, or do I look at whoever I am talking to – something I always thought should be done in polite society. If I do focus my eyes upon whoever is chatting to me, I am looking away from the camera, meaning my chat buddy thinks I am being rude by not appearing to pay attention to them. It’s all too confusing for me!

SEE HOW BEWILDERING IT CAN BE…

Now before I go on, I will ask anyone who knows me – especially those who have invited me to join them on Zoom – to re-read the opening paragraph on this post…

I don’t really see the point in seeing the person I am talking to online. It’s not that I dislike them – if I did, I wouldn’t be chatting to them in any capacity. Nor do I find anyone unpleasant to look at. I just don’t get why people bother with video calls.

Isn’t it enough that we have arranged an online chat? Why do we have to stare at each other as well? Even when Claire was at university, we would text chat daily on MSN, but I have no memory of video calls to the girl I have since married.

While I am on this anti-Zoom roll… I know of more than a few people who have began using Zoom to talk to friends they haven’t spoken to in years.

This appears to be a new craze since we entered lockdown. I get why close family and friends have recently taken up this means of communication – they would normally meet in person, but cannot at the moment.

I cannot understand why so many individuals are treating Zoom like Friends Reunited*. If you haven’t seen Tony from Leeds Uni for 25 years, why has it taken a killer virus to trigger your nostalgic memories? I am sure that Tony was just as reachable pre-pandemic in 2019, 2018, 2017… you get the idea. In fact, the chances of reaching Tony were probably greater last year than they are now, considering that he may have since caught coronavirus and, well, you know…

* if you want to feel old, there is an entire generation, so young that who won’t have a clue what this website was.

SADLY FOLLOWING IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF BROOKSIDE, WOOLWORTHS, BURY FOOTBALL CLUB AND VANILLA FLAVOURED MONSTER MUNCH.

To conclude, if you know me, please don’t ask that I get Zoom. I can be very stubborn and have taken a strong stance against it (can’t you tell?).

The same goes for using my Facebook account, complimenting Manchester United in any shape or form, requesting outside help at home for my care needs, voting for the Tories, and laughing at Mrs Brown’s Boys.

Saying that, for years I insisted that I would never install WhatsApp. I have now found myself using it on a daily basis – but NEVER EVER for video calls!

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