Thursday, 22 August, 2019

WhatsApp Reduces Message-Forwarding, To Curb Fake News

WhatsApp limits text forwards to five recipients; here is the reason WhatsApp Globally Limits Forwards to 5 Chats to Curb Rumours
Pablo Mccormick | 21 January, 2019, 18:08

The service, that now allow users to forward messages up to 20 times, announced the new policy in Jakarta, Indonesia when the country is holding its general elections.

The Facebook owned business announced that users will now be limited to sharing messages up-to 5 times, which is a reduction from the 20 that was previously allowed.

"WhatsApp had introduced limits on message forwarding in July past year starting with India, following a series of mob-lynching incidents in the country triggered by rumors and fake messages on the platform". "The forward limit significantly reduced forwarded messages around the world", a spokeswoman added.

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The Facebook-owned messaging app cited its intention to combat "misinformation and rumours" as the reason for the change.

According to an emailed press release, users can now only forward messages to five contacts or groups at once.

India is WhatsApp's biggest market, with about 200 million of its 1.5 billion users.

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The spread of fake news on WhatsApp, Facebook, and other social media platforms became a focal point of discussion previous year. In addition to technical measures, it launched campaigns there to educate its users about fake messages.

We're imposing a limit of five messages all over the world as of today.

In South Africa a number of advertising scams rely on WhatsApp users forwarding a luring message to friends in return for supposed free air time or vouchers, or access to a list of people due to be paid money. It that respect, limiting the number of times you can forward a message does very little to stop the spread of fake news.

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Android users will be the first to receive the update, and it will arrive shortly afterwards on iPhone.

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