It was primarily meant to expand on its practices around how WhatsApp business users can store their communications but it made many users concerned about their privacy, and many opted to move to other messaging apps.
The reassurance may have come a little too late, as 25 million users joined a rival messaging app Telegram in just 72 hours after the initial announcement was made.
But WhatsApp’s loss may be social media’s gain as Telegram users have found that it is a new avenue of accessing positive content.
For example, the Singapore government launched its official COVID-19 channel on Telegram earlier this year, disseminating the same COVID-19 messages it carries on the Gov.sg WhatsApp channel. At the time of writing, the Gov.sg Telegram channel has over 300,000 subscribers.
If you haven’t joined Telegram, or have installed it but don’t use it that much, here are ten more Singaporean Telegram channels to inspire you to make that switch (and live life more purposefully!):
1. NParks Buzz (@NParksBuzz)
Learn about the flora and fauna that makes Singapore so beautiful from NParks’ official telegram channel. Get tips on spotting migratory birds such as the Blue-tailed Bee-eater and learn how you can help reduce sightings of pigeons in your neighbourhood (by disposing food waste properly, of course)!
2. SG Arts Channel (@SGArtsChannel)
How does appreciating art help with our emotional wellbeing? Apparently, plenty! Programmes such as Slow Art are inspired by the principles of slow looking and mindfulness, while some immersive art experiences make us appreciate what we have or what we’re missing.
Unleash your inner art aficionado and sign up for events like these on SG Arts Channel.
3. The Woke Salarypeople (@wokesalaryman)
Singaporeans love the guys at The Woke Salaryman. What’s not to love when they dish out financial and life tips that Singaporeans can relate to, in cute and simple illustrations no less! I especially like this series that talks about how our degree does not define us.
Subscribe to their Telegram channel for more nuggets of wisdom.
4. KarangKakiSg (@KarangKakiSG)
How often do we buy something on impulse and then leave it in the corner of our house untouched? KarangKakiSG is a platform to give items to a new owner for free! It taps on the idea that an unused item in our home may just be on someone else’s wishlist. It’s a win-win-win situation. You remove clutter, someone else gets what he needs and it’s an overall win for Mother Earth! Find out how you can submit an item here.
5. Singapore Freebies by Sharethings (@Sgfreebie)
Similar to KarangKakiSG, Singapore Freebies by Sharethings also aim to reduce waste by creating a common platform that allows users to give away unwanted items easily. Products on its Telegram channel range from clothes to stationery to toys.
6. Uglyfood Fresh Produce (@uglyfoodfreshproduce)
Fruits and vegetables that are not “supermarket friendly” often get discarded even when they are still good to eat. Uglyfood Fresh Produce aims to change that.
Uglyfood was founded in 2016 with a mission to eliminate food waste and revamp the food ecosystem. It offers ugly (yet delicious) produce, its own inhouse products (made from its own stocks), and sustainably sourced goods. Deals and bundles can go up to 40% off compared to supermarket prices and are shared with subscribers of its Telegram channel.
7. VolunteerSG (@VolunteerSG)
Always wanted to help the community but not sure where to start? The VolunteerSG Telegram channel helps you minimise the search and maximise your heart! The team posts regular updates of organisations that need help and volunteering activities in Singapore to help you in your volunteering journey.
8. Scratchbac (@scratchbac_sg_public)
Scratchbac aims to be a community platform that helps neighbours connect with each other. Other than sharing information and resources on its Telegram channel, neighbours can also offer to share extra cakes, cook takeaway lunches for one another or help an elderly neighbour with groceries!
9. East Coast Beach Plan (@eastcoastbeachplan)
Love the beach but hate to see it strewn with plastic cups and debris?
Join 26-year-old Samantha Thian, a full-time sustainability manager and founder of Seastainable Co. on her organised beach clean-ups. She started the #EastCoastBeachPlan after discovering, on her morning walks that the beach was filled with plastic trash. Support from her Instagram followers inspired her to organise beach clean-ups at designated areas in Singapore, and a Telegram group chat was set up to update its members of clean-up schedules and cleanliness status of the different beaches in Singapore.
10. The Pride (@ThePrideSG)
Tired of reading negative content on the Internet? Yes, this is a shameless plug for our own Telegram channel @ThePrideSG.
The bad news that hogs headlines and news feeds today can paint a pretty depressing picture of the state of our world. But it also doesn’t accurately capture a lot of the good that is happening, unknown to many of us.
What is missing from today’s narratives are the stories of people who are changing the world for the better with their actions, and the voices of those who see things with a kinder, less antagonistic perspective.
We tackle social issues and address hot conversation topics through a lens of positivity and empathy, and tell stories that we hope can inspire all of us to be greater.
Click here to join!