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How WhatsApp Plans to Curb Fake News

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Recently, WhatsApp intends to incorporate couple of features to curb fake news. Read on to know more about it…

To curb fake news, WhatsApp is planning to introduce couple of features that are under development. The new features is likely to release in the next beta updates. Previously, to fight fake news — WhatsApp had introduced the ‘Forwarding’ feature to sent forwarded message to others. WhatsApp had put a global limit on forwarded messages to five people. This was done to ensure users that what they were reading or seeing, is not a composed one from their relatives, friend but forwarded from someone else.

As of now, when we forward a message or a photo in WhatsApp, we get the label of “forwarded” above message text. But now, in the new feature — when a message gets forwarded for more than four times, WhatsApp will display the “Frequently Forwarded” label on the top of the message.

Forwarding Info
Now, WhatsApp is likely to introduce the “Forwarding Info” and “Frequently Forwarded.” features to further curb fake news. The “Forwarding Info” and “Frequently Forwarded” are likely to be a part of WhatsApp Android beta version 2.19.80.

The “Forwarding Info” feature will help people to know about how many times a message has been forwarded or sent. Through this feature, one can get the idea about the information after visiting the Message Info section of the WhatsApp. The beta update reveals an upcoming feature that reveals how many times a message has been forwarded. Beta users can see the insight under the Message Info section which currently shows status such as read and delivered.

WhatsApp is also working on a new label for forwarded messages. Soon, WhatsApp will notify when a message has been “frequently forwarded.” This will allow users to spot a viral message which may or may not be true.

When these features are rolled out, this will be second big change since WhatsApp launched “forwarded” label for messages. As the name implies, WhatsApp now adds a label whenever you forward or receive a forwarded message.

Short link
WhatsApp is working on a new feature for Business users. The instant messaging company will soon allow businesses to shorten link. The purpose of URL shortener is to allow customers to initiate conversation on the platform directly through the link. It looks a lot like a profile ID link which can be copied and shared. The feature is available to select users under the Business Settings.

Menace of Fake News
The spread of fake news and rumors has become a matter of great concern for the world’s largest democracy, India. With around more than 200 million active users in India, the spread of fake news poses a clear threat to India. Earlier, there have been instances of misuse of WhatsApp for propaganda and spreading hate that were reported in the 2018 Karnataka Assembly elections.

Earlier this month, Abhijit Bose, the India head of WhatsApp had announced that the messaging app would take concrete steps to identify and weed out fake news on the platform. WhatsApp is also conducting extensive research to understand the challenge of misinformation and how to tackle the problem effectively.

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