Virtual Lives: BBs, BCs, DPs and the like!

I recall reading Banky W’s article about Black Berry etiquette a while back. I can’t remember the title now but I know I really enjoyed it, even though at the time I hadn’t a clue as to the meaning of half the terminology that was used. Then I didn’t possess a BB (as fondly shortened by all proud owners, and hey it makes it less cumbersome to say!) and hadn’t used one much either. I know some people (my nieces and nephew for instance) that don’t own one but know how to use it quite well; I’m convinced they could show me a trick or two if I asked too. As a result the frequently used abbreviations went right over my head and so I guess maybe I missed the crux of what he said.

I do know that then he was quite miffed about BCs and the frequency with which some people used (abused) them. Now I understand what his grouse was and wonder why some people feel they must share the slightest joke (many not amusing at all), unsubstantiated warnings about bombs, armed robbers, robberies, poisoned suya…the list is endless! During the Occupy Nigeria/fuel protests there were broadcast messages coming in every second (seemed like that anyway) and to preserve my sanity I turned off the alert tone. I’ve since kept it that way since the blinking light is much better than the annoying noises. It really ticks me off too when the messages are not that urgent and I’ve rushed to check only to find out it could have kept. On the flip side, there are genuine messages sent through BCs, but with the huge amount of fakes they could be buried.

For someone used to short forms and even shorter words when sending out text messages, the new acronyms I found in BBland floored me. Not one to shy away from questions (no matter how dumb), I had to ask quite a number. One of these was what dp stood for and was relieved when told, so I was prepared and pleased when asked the same question, I gave myself a mental pat on the back when I shared my newly acquired knowledge. The tradition of changing dps to celebrate a friend’s birthday (or memorial of sorts) is simple but quite profound and the person that started it deserves an award.

My very first contact is still on my device and now I have a little over a hundred…I often wonder how that happened! If you’re anything like me, you do an occasional purge i.e. numbers you no longer use and quietly delete them. This doesn’t mean I don’t keep a record, maybe it’s no longer as important as it once was. I also apply this principle to the BB but not so often since I am selective with how I share the identification number. Despite this, I still scroll through and check if a purge is required.

There are some people that you haven’t chatted with in a while (voice or chat messages!) and the only reason you know they still breath is when their dp changes (there are some very funny jokes about categories of BB users) and that gives some comfort. Recently one of my contacts sent out a broadcast stating that he was going to delete contacts that didn’t respond. Apparently he was jobless but needless to say that he got quite a number of replies…courtesy of his status later that day.

The Black Berry and other smart phones are here to stay and user behaviour will continue to surprise us in the days ahead. The staggering evolution in technology shows that we should expect more interactive with them an more of their ilk. Our virtual lives can only get more interesting and I’m content to monitor developments from my little corner and hopefully have more fodder to share with you on the more entertaining and enlightening incidents.

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