May 15, the deadline to accept WhatsApp’s controversial privacy policy, is but a few hours away. This privacy policy has landed WhatsApp and its parent company Facebook in a lot of hot water in India, ever since it was first announced, even to the extent that the Supreme Court threatened to intervene if necessary to protect the privacy of citizens. While WhatsApp has allayed fears that users who do not accept the privacy policy will have their accounts erased, there is more than what meets the eye.

On the eve of the acceptance of perhaps the most controversial policy ever made by WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned company made it clear that while users who do not accept the policy can keep their accounts, they will start losing some of the top (perhaps the best!) features of WhatsApp until they do decide to accept it.

In simple terms, your account will be safe if you do not accept the policy despite getting persistent reminders from WhatsApp, but you will lose a lot of functionality soon, including being unable to access features like chat lists, notifications, and calls. The reminders will appear permanently on your display whenever you open WhatsApp, and the only way you can get rid of the reminders is to accept the policy in order to access the chat list or send messages to your accounts.

In a statement, WhatsApp highlighted the features users will be unable to use. “After a few weeks of limited functionality, you won’t be able to receive incoming calls or notifications and WhatsApp will stop sending messages and calls to your phone. At that point, users will have to choose: either they accept the new terms, or they are in effect prevented from using WhatsApp at all,” WhatsApp said. So you will have your account in all but name, unable to see messages in what is an instant messaging app, and restricted from answering and making WhatsApp calls soon after.

WhatsApp made it clear that until you accept, you will face the consequences until you are forced to accept or delete WhatsApp from your device completely.

It was back in January that WhatsApp faced a huge backlash from users after it informed them about its new privacy policy, setting the original deadline on February 8. WhatsApp made it clear (in a not-so-subtle manner) that unless you accept, you will lose access to WhatsApp and will no longer be allowed to use it. It was intervention by the court that led to the postponement of the deadline, even as many users migrated to other messaging apps like Telegram.

In April, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) told the Delhi High Court that the new privacy policy would lead to the collection of user data on a large scale, something that has been strongly denied by both WhatsApp and Facebook. They argued that it was all for the benefit of users. However, most users were not convinced.

In essence, the facts remain the same – accept the privacy policy or resort to other messaging apps. While you retain your WhatsApp account, you cannot do much else if you do not accept the privacy policy.