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I agree, any unsolicitied forced continuous messages that I don't want and have no way to disable are harassment.
I find the covid StaySafe crap incredibly annoying and insipid and patronizing.
It's also offensive that I'm supposed to just blindly accept whatever they want to brainwash me with, as if we're not supposed to think for ourselves and are just supposed to follow like dumb obedient puppies ... today it's covid, tomorrow it'll be something different, like pro-Communist propaganda - trust me, the ability to forcibly brainwash your citizens with messages daily is something all governments will abuse in the long run. 100% guarantee this 'direct brainwashing channel to every citizen' will be abused. We especially know this in South Africa as it's what the old government did, to implement an authoritarian police state: Control every communications channel with direct brainwashing propaganda. The laws stating we have to link to the Covid site are exactly the same type of thing the Apartheid government did in regulating media to ensure that only the State's view is pushed everywhere.
We're all already overloaded with nonsense 'notifications' all day long for everything else inbetween having to do real work. It's enough. Phones should give us absolutely COMPLETE control over what we want and don't want on them. They belong to us. We pay for them. We're not slaves or tools to our devices, it's the other way round.
The people who suggest that either you turn off your phone or you accept harassment are complete tools/idiots - my phone is a computing device that's meant to HELP me and I SHOULD be able to manage everything on it in a way that minimizes or blocks all unnecessary annoying interruptions, while serving me in a useful way in the ways that I need it to. If you harass me to the point I have to turn off my phone which I paid for then you at least owe me the money for the phone you effectively rendered useless to me.
The StaySafe messages are designed to create an atmosphere of continual fear - an old-fashioned moral panic which is designed to frighten the population into obediently accepting authoritarian control. Is Covid real? Yes. But is it as dangerous as they say? No, statistics show as long as you're relatively healthy you have a 99% chance of surviving it if you catch it ... and some studies suggest many people might not even be susceptible to it.
"Swart gevaar" went with a "Red under every bed" didn't it?Reading StaySafe SMSs = "Let me plug myself into a direct propaganda line and feed myself propaganda"
It's like injecting propaganda straight into your brain. Designed to manufacture disproportionate fear.
Even if you agree with all this and think covid is as bad as the Plague, at the very least don't blindly believe every bit of propaganda. Anywhere, whether it's StaySafe SMSs, or from the media or government.
At the very least, question it. Question every SMS. Question every article you read. Question every bill being pushed. Question the motivations of those pushing it. Question authority. Ask questions like 'why', 'is this true', and especially 'who benefits'?
The old government tried to control every channel of information and controlled public opinion by manipulating the truth. Stoking fear (e.g. "swart gevaar") to control people and consolidate support while doing many unethical things. We should, as a people, have learned from our history, and learned to recognize these propaganda techniques being used once again. Also, things like forcing every SA website to link to the government website should have set alarm bells ringing - the old government attempted to 'control all information channels with state propaganda' - and that's largely the same thing. Every website must have link to state propaganda website, every smartphone gets fed direct propaganda messages - control over all information channels. The old government would have loved all this.