Whatsapp has confirmed today that it will be restricting forwards to five chats and this limit will apply globally to every Whatsapp user.
The Facebook-owned chat messaging service had restricted forwards to 20 chats back in July 2018, nevertheless, the limit for Indian market was set to five. It looks like Whatsapp has implemented the ‘not more than five forwards’ rule to all over the world now.
Whatsapp, in an official statement, said that this decision was taken after evaluating this test and the feedback from users over the past six months. The new “forward limit significantly reduced forwarded messages around the world,” according to the company.
Whatsapp notes that in order to curb the amount of content that goes viral globally, the company is taking this step.
The update from WhatsApp says, “Starting today, all users on the latest versions of WhatsApp can now forward to only five chats at once, which will help keep WhatsApp focused on private messaging with close contacts. We’ll continue to listen to user feedback about their experience, and over time, look for new ways of addressing viral content.”
Anyone who is using the latest version of Whatsapp will only be able to forward a message to five chats. Whatsapp had applied this limit in India in order to put a stop to the rapidly spreading fake news and propaganda through the messenger. Some of the fake news became the catalyst for real-world violence, after which Whatsapp had to adopt this limit to the app.
Whatsapp had said that India was the country where people forwarded more messages, photos, and videos than any other country in the world.
The company also included a forward label feature that appears on the forwarded texts.
The idea behind this was to make people aware that they were seeing a forwarded text and so they could have a hint of skepticism while reading it.
WhatsApp has also been hosting digital literacy workshops in India and even launched advertising campaigns in India against the spread of misinformation and fake news on the platform.