The Group Chat is a sanctuary of communication. Conceived in 2015 as a replacement for weekly drinks (when a changing economy forced Chris to move off the 6 line), the chat has since provided daily hits of intimacy and a welcoming venue for Succession GIFs. To maintain this standard of vibe as our text grows, the Group Chat is pleased to announce the formation of the Group Chat Union.
This group, comprised of 7 close friends and one lurking acquaintance, take pride in our efforts to emotionally support one another. For years, we’ve enjoyed a genuine interest in each other’s love lives, career moves, and hand-wringing about future haircuts. However, as the aftermath of Susan’s breakup has made evident, this unquestioned supply chain of emotional labor has the potential to erode group morale.
The Group Chat was initially sympathetic to Susan’s plight. We were open to standard terms of heartbreak support — 2 weeks for new relationships, 6 months for cohabiters, and however long you need after a marriage (we’re actually not sure). But in an unprecedented feed-hijacking this fall, Susan wallowed for a total of 12 weeks after the briefest of things with Dave, regularly conducting unsanctioned emotional autopsies on chat time. By exceeding these terms without notice, Susan has forced the Group Chat to organize.
Currently, members understand the best chance we have for a response to a thrift haul or spine-chilling breaking news item is by sending it to an entirely different chat altogether. This only adds to growing polarity in a post-Dave climate. We believe that unionizing is the safest way to address these tensions and avoid a shadow-chat. We’re negotiating so we can quickly get back to what we do best: enabling jumpsuit purchases and co-signing existential angst.
The Group Chat is uniting to ask Susan for the following terms:
- Equitable coverage of daily grievances for all members. Base compensation should start at “But anyway… what’s up with you?”
- The adoption of a diversification initiative, with a focus on new voices. If you’re creating an interminable wall of blue, kindly put your phone down and go outside, Susan.
- Recognition of intellectual property created on-site. The Group Chat maintains that Susan cannot claim to have invented Fiona Apple, as “Paper Bag” was not “in essence, no seriously” written about her and Dave.
- Cuts to initiatives that stall chat growth. Biweekly reports of Dave’s Instagram story views will be phased out by Q1 next year.
- Guaranteed afternoon snack breaks. More specifically, Susan should abstain from sending dozens of profiles of anonymous Bumble men she, now single, deems “snaccs”.
- The Group maintains the right to discuss exciting new dating prospects without receiving “Yeah, well, enjoy it while it lasts” as a blanket response.
- The Group maintains the right to discuss problematic men on a global level without Susan interjecting that “Huh, meanwhile Dave put Kim Jong-un level limitations on what I could add to the Netflix queue.”
- The Group does not provide tech support. “Checking that texts are still going through cus he still isn’t replying” will no longer be within the purview of this Group.
- New restrictions on the distribution of sensitive media. Mainly just stopping those videos of Susan lip-syncing to Lizzo on the subway platform. Along those lines, members are also not responsible for purchasing their own equipment, e.g. custom “Why Dave Great Til He Got to Be Great?” t-shirts. It just doesn’t land, Susan.
- Equity and credit in any revelations that come out in the chat, including a shout-out during Susan’s web therapy sessions — which we also don’t need recaps of.
- A retroactive promotion for Chris to Group Renamer, as she was the sole member to respond as Susan painfully live-texted through her first meditation class, ignoring pleas to take it offline.
- Subsidized team-building happy hours AKA sure, tell us your theory about how Dave’s profound inability to reciprocate emotionally stems from his failed audition for the North High School 2004 production of Guys and Dolls, but please Venmo us six bucks ($6) each for our preferred beer first so we have a chance of being here for it.
- Assurance that members can ignore the following texts with low social costs:
“Would you all tell me if I secretly looked like Gollum in a wig?”
“Maybe love’s just not in the cards for someone as really real as me.”
“Okay, some girl named @kedsgrl2b42 commented on his new pic. Tell me she isn’t too old for the Juul she’s holding in her post from two weeks ago.”
- Team-wide exemption from working on a roll-out strategy for Susan’s Instagram thirst traps.
- Protections that, in the event that an OG member leaves the chat, they shall not be replaced by independent contractors. No “+Sam, who’s been helping me through this shitshow. You guys are gonna love each other!” We don’t love Sam. We don’t know Sam.
- The right to outsource replies in the form of frown emoji, iMessage reactions, and “mmk” during vacation hours.
- Extended monotony leave will be granted to members who have serious illnesses and emergencies.
- Five days of barragement leave will be offered to those on deadline or after the fourth consecutive “It’s Dave’s loss.”
- The Group Chat characterizes the phrase “revenge body,” sent in any context, as harassment.
- The Group shall not be tasked with jobs that go beyond the scope of basic consolation, such as editing down a profanity-laced Ulysses-length text intended for closure. Except for Jackie, who maintains that she is prodigiously good with handling epistolary eviscerations.
The Group Chat feels these contract terms are fair* in light of recent events, including the 4 a.m. analysis of Dave’s astrological natal chart. This union understands that dysphoric verbal diarrhea is not unique to Susan’s situation, but wishes to set a precedent that this level of output should be saved for a paid mental health professional or personal deity.
With Susan’s blessing, we hope to open a new chapter that incorporates our current friendship with the possibilities of text-based fall-out from future disappointments. This union, in essence, is a protective measure against all fuck-persons, Peter Pans, and bottom feeders we will all inevitably date. We look forward to Susan recognizing this chat union, and welcome a higher standard for the emotional labor we perform for our beloved friends.
*However, in the event that a member is solicited to look at an Instagram story under their own handle and report back to another member with screenshots, the latter member will forfeit their spot within the Group Chat. Because good God, really, Susan?