In a bid to curb the circulation of fake news and misleading information on its platform, WhatsApp has officially announced on Tuesday ghat that it has reduced the limit for the frequently forwarded message. The WhatsApp users now will be able to send frequently forwarded messages to one chat at a time. The company has narrowed the limit that allowed the users to forward messages up to five times. It is important to note that this limit applies to the frequently forwarded messages that have been previously forwarded five times or more. The Facebook-owned platform is looking to assist in reducing the spread of fake news during these unprecedented times wherein the entire world is affected by the novel Coronavirus Pandemic. Moreover, WhatsApp was also seen providing a feature allowing the users to verify the forwarded messages online. WhatsApp Group Admins in Madhya Pradesh Block Other Members From Posting to Curb Fake Messages Amid COVID-19 Lockdown.
With lockdown imposed in most of the countries resulting the users to stay at home, WhatsApp noticed a huge spike in forwards globally. The company stated in its blog post that it had witnessed a massive increase in the amount of forwarding, counted as overwhelming by users. However, it can contribute to the spreading of misinformation. Taking certain steps towards the same, WhatsApp decided to limit forwards to one chat at a time.
The primary objective of this new update from WhatsApp is to restrict the users from sharing frequently forwarded message to more than one user at once. But, this doesn't imply that the users won't be able to forward a frequently forwarded message to multiple users at all. This is a welcome step from WhatsApp as it will certainly help in curbing the spread of fake news to some extent.
As a reminder, WhatsApp introduced 'Frequently Forwarded' message label to its platform last year. The feature was introduced to help the users in identifying the message that they received originated from close contact or not. WhatsApp is rolling out the new frequently forwarded message limit for both Android and iOS platforms. Soon, the feature will be rolled out on the global front.
Additionally, WhatsApp was seen testing a new feature wherein it would allow the users to verify the content of the forwarded message by searching it online. Some of the WhatsApp beta versions offer a magnifying glass icon next to the frequently forwarded messages that allow the users to perform a web search to confirm the authenticity of the message.