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Caution Before you forward that WhatsApp post, think about its possible effects

For several days, social media was overrun with memes, jokes and banter around the supposedly prayerful man’s misfortune.

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Brother Ocholla's mildly raunchy text that ended up in his “Embakasi Prayer Cell” group and promptly spilled into the public domain. For several days, social media was overrun with memes, jokes and banter around the supposedly prayerful man’s misfortune.

If a stray chat to your “prayer cell” WhatsApp group ends up getting publicly ridiculed on the Internet, you’re probably in the wrong prayer group. If one of your spiritual brothers or sisters shares a screenshot of a private conversation complete with your mobile phone numbers for a laugh, they were never really your friends.

That’s what happened to “Brother Ocholla” when a mildly raunchy text ended up in his “Embakasi Prayer Cell” group and promptly spilled into the public domain. For several days, social media was overrun with memes, jokes and banter around the supposedly prayerful man’s misfortune.

Brother Ocholla’s misfortune started when he posted a sexually suggestive message to his prayer group. “You seem to love my voice,” the “sext” began before going ahead to compare sexual gratification with cloud nine.

“Oops,” responded a group member named Ezra a minute later, at 19.41.

“Bro Ocholla?” That must have been the thought going through all the other group members’ minds at that precise moment.

“Wrong Message. Sorry. Poleni,” he wrote back in quick succession. Silence for 10 minutes.

“YAWA!!!” exclaimed another group member at 19.53. He must have spent the time prayerfully considering his response but abandoned all the appropriate Biblical expressions for a good, old ethnic exclamation. There are situations that call for these and this one certainly qualified.

Anybody who uses WhatsApp, or any instant messaging service for that matter, for a considerable time, has sent a stray chat.

SUDDEN INFAMY

Harsh instructions to your househelp that end up in your chama group, that sexist text meant for your boys’ collective that is sent to your mother instead, or an off-colour joke you’re sure you forwarded to that one friend who will get it but was at that moment shocking your uncles and distant cousins because it went to the family cluster.

Everyone has been there but you just hope that the message is only mildly embarrassing and you can get away with an awkward apology and nothing more.

“The message was meant for my wife but I sent it to the wrong prayer cell group,” a man claiming to be the Ocholla in question told Kiss FM. “Someone from the group took it and put it on Twitter. It just happened that some guys can be malicious.”

He didn’t sound particularly fazed by all the attention around his chats, explaining that he had apologised to the group immediately.  He didn’t say if he had left the group with the malicious character but his wife was equally undaunted by his sudden infamy.

“It was meant for me. It happened last week, it’s not something new,” she said.

She didn’t explain how her husband was telling her she “seemed” to like his voice when they were already married. “I’m just surprised that media is outside there to break people’s houses.”

Oh, so now it’s the media’s fault?

But an audio clip also doing the rounds on  what else? WhatsApp could lend her statement some credibility. A female presenter with a Nakuru radio station called up a woman who confessed to having carnal relations with newly dead people in order to get rich. She claims the woman’s husband wanted to tell her  via a radio station that it was over. From her line of questioning, and the accused woman’s answers, it was obvious the whole exchange was staged, and badly, at that.

I didn’t know about it until I got a distress message from “a very depressed soul”, as she described herself. “Apparently someone tagged my photo to the audio claiming I’m the lady,” she wrote to me. “My picture is everywhere with people calling me all sorts of names for this lie.”

Source: Daily Nation

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