37 Unwritten Rules of Using WhatsApp in Israel

3 min read
Yonatan Engler
Yonatan Engler

Israeli WhatsApp etiquette can be broken down into three categories: 1-to-1 messages, group messages, and profile pictures.

Here are the unwritten rules you should know for each.

1-to-1 Messages:

1) Send only one voice message at a time — maximum!

2) Unless you’re speaking with a family member or a close friend, keep voice messages to no more than 10 seconds.

3) If your message is more than three lines, it’s probably too long.

4) No disabling your “last seen at” feature.

5) Send one single message to get your point across! Don’t send every word as its own message.

6) Don’t be offended for not being part of someone else’s WhatsApp group.

7) No sending links or pictures without explaining what it is.

8) No deleting messages because you regret what you said.

9) Always answer video calls, no matter where you are.

10) No one uses WhatsApp statuses.

11) Multitasking is a skill you must master for WhatsApp.

12) Always use fitting stickers. Those are the best.

13) Use locations correctly! Live locations can save you a lot of back-and-forth texting.

14) Don’t call someone via WhatsApp unless you’re abroad, or unless you want to video chat.

WhatsApp Groups:

15) Don’t start another WhatsApp group unless you’ve thought about it a thousand times, and there’s just no other option.

16) Only send messages related to the group — anything non-related is considered spam! (No one cares that your friend’s company is hiring.)

17) Don’t be offended if someone leaves a group. It takes guts to leave a group chat.

18) Have an exit strategy if you’re planning on leaving one; definitely send your excuse in the group before leaving.

19) Don’t be a ghost — respond!

20) Don’t create huge groups (more than 15 people).

21) No 1-to-1 conversations! Not even one.

22) Set accepted talking hours; no one wants work messages on a Friday night, and no one wants to miss out on a hilarious group chat while in a work meeting.

23) If a message needs a response, only respond if it’s a yes.

24) If someone asks a question and you don’t know the answer, don’t respond with: “I don’t know.” Just wait for someone who knows the answer to reply.

25) Don’t send a hundred “thank you” messages. If you feel thankful for someone or something someone did, tell them in a private message.

26) If someone asks you a personal question, change immediately to 1-to-1 message.

27) Don’t add random people to a close-knit group.

28) When the group has served its purpose, self-destruct.

29) When you’re added to a new group, mute it immediately for one year.

30) Keep the group name funny and irrelevant.

31) The group photo should be an embarrassing photograph of one of the members.

32) Never, ever try to explain your group chat to an outsider.

33) Definitely do NOT create a subgroup.

34) Never leave someone hanging; always reply, even if you have to send a random GIF.

WhatsApp Profile Pictures:

35) No pictures of your kids, or with an animal that isn’t your own.

36) No pictures without a shirt if you’re a guy, and wearing a bathing suit if you’re a girl.

37) No pictures of something that isn’t your face.

Hebrew Keywords for WhatsApp:

  • הוֹדָעָה – hoh-dah-ah – message
  • הוֹדָעָה פְּרָטִית – hoh-dah-ah prah-teet – private message
  • הוֹדָעָה קְבוּצָתִית – hoh-dah-ah k’voo-tzah-teet – group message
  • הוֹדָעָה קוֹלִית – hoh-dah-ah koh-leet – voice message
  • לְהַקְלִיט – leh-hahk-leet – to record (a voice message)
  • קְבוּצַת וואטסאפ – k’voo-tzaht whahts-ahpp – WhatsApp Group
  • תְּמוּנַת פְּרוֹפִיל – t’moo’naht proh-feel – profile picture
  • לִשְׁלֹוחַ – leesh-loh-ahch – to send
  • לְסַמֵּס – leh-sah-mes – to send an SMS
  • לְהֶסְתַּמֵּס – leh-hees-tah-mes – to send an SMS to one another
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