In many social media platforms users are getting new features amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Also, the companies are adding new features like group video chat, increasing members limit for group video chat, etc.
With the ease of using social media platforms there might be a chance of an increase in the flow of fake news. Recently, WhatsApp has put restrictions on forwarding messages to stop the flow of fake messages and the company now says that its already seeing results.
WhatsApp official says” We recently introduced a limit to sharing ‘highly forwarded messages’ to just one chat. Since putting into place this new limit, globally there has been a 70% reduction in the number of highly forwarded messages sent on WhatsApp. This change is helping keep WhatsApp a place for personal and private conversations. WhatsApp is committed to doing our part to tackle viral messages”. This was reported by TechCrunch.
Does WhatsApp has failed to stop Fake News?
Earlier this month Harish Jonnalagadda has criticized WhatsApp’s inaction on forwards. He says” WhatsApp needs to take charge here and roll out meaningful tools to curb misinformation on its platform. It should start by disabling message forwarding altogether, as that will limit how easily fake news spreads on the platform. By forcing everyone to manually copy and paste the text into every group, WhatsApp will also be able to have a better idea of where a falsified message originated from”.
He also added “These are unprecedented times, and the last thing we need is unnecessary panic brought on by misinformation. WhatsApp says it is serious about tackling fake news on its platform and rolled out a way for users to search the web directly from the service. While that’s a step in the right direction, it needs to curtail the spread of misinformation in the first place. To do that, it has to remove message forwarding altogether.”
WhatsApp still not removed the forwarding option because it is important in some cases. At the end of the day it’s on us how we utilize the technology. I hope so there will be some solutions to stop the fake news.