The Indian government’s attack on WhatsApp regarding the spread of the fake news on its platform led to WhatsApp to launch a feature where they will label forwarded messages to dispel fake news. WhatsApp pushed out a full-page newspaper ad with some easy tips. With this tips, users will be able to identify that whatever the message is received whether it’s true or fake. The title “Together we can fight false information” seems promising.
The ad also stated – “If you read something that makes you angry or afraid, ask whether it was shared to make you feel that way. And if answer is yes, think twice before sharing it again.” WhatsApp spoke person also stated – “We are starting an education campaign in India on how to spot fake news and rumors. Our first step is placing newspaper advertisements in English and Hindi and several other languages. We will build on these efforts.”
The newspaper ad covers 10 amazing tips. The company also has suggested looking for other sources of the same information, leaving groups to control what you read, questioning information that may upset you among other tips.
WhatsApp rolled out a new feature that will label forwarded messages indicating the receivers that the sender is not the creator of the message. In WhatsApp blog, it is mentioned that,
“WhatsApp will indicate which messages you receive has been forwarded to you. This extra context will help make one-on-one and group chats easier to follow. It also helps you determine if your friend or relative wrote the message they sent or if it originally came from someone else. To see this new forwarded label, you need to have the latest supported version of WhatsApp on your phone.”
WhatsApp also reminded users that fake news often goes viral but if a message is shared many times it does not make it true. The WhatsApp’s spoke person also stated –
“We ban accounts based on user reports and by the manner in which messages are sent. We use machine learning to identify accounts by sending a high volume of messages and we are constantly working to improve our ability to stop unwanted automated messages.”
Very soon WhatsApp will launch a new feature on its platform in India that will help to identify whether the message is forwarded or written by the user. India is WhatsApp’s largest market with an estimated 200 million users sending a billion encrypted messages each day. WhatsApp has previously mentioned that it is giving users controls and information to help them stay safe. Therefore, the company is more concerned about public safety.