WhatsApp introduces new ways to tackle to spread of fake news

WhatsApp introduces new ways to tackle to spread of fake news
Highlights

A practice which had been introduced by WhatsApp in the month of July last year, states that it will be globally limit message forwards to five chats at a time, to crack down on the spread of rumours and fake news through the means of the platform

A practice which had been introduced by WhatsApp in the month of July last year, states that it will be globally limit message 'forwards' to five chats at a time, to crack down on the spread of rumours and fake news through the means of the platform.

WhatsApp, in an update to it's Monday blog had said that the move will be helpful in maintaining, "WhatsApp focused on private messaging with close contacts. WhatsApp carefully evaluated this test and listened to user feedback over a six-month period. The forward limit significantly reduced forwarded messages around the world.”

A spokesperson of WhatsApp had told a source, that during the test period, the company had encountered a 25 per cent reduction of forwarded messages that are being shared on WhatsApp. "We believe this is a reasonable number to reach close friends, while helping prevent abuse," the spokesperson added.

The pressure to stop the rumours and fake news, has restricted the forwarding messages to five chats at once and it has also removed the quick forward button for the media messages in India - a market that has over 200 million WhatsApp users.

In fact, the Indian government - through proposed changes in IT rules - is seeking to make social media platforms more accountable by mandating them to introduce tools that can identify and disable "unlawful content".

WhatsApp had also brought out television and radio campaigns and also full-page advertisements on offering tips to the users on how to identify misinformation.

However, the company has resisted the demand of the government for identifying the originators of the messages, as it has been argued that such a move would undermine the end-to-end encryption and the private nature of the network, which will basically create potential for misuse.

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