Messaging app WhatsApp has announced a test to limit forwarding message and remove the quick forward button next to media message following India’s concern over spread of ‘fake’ message through WhatsApp that led to mob lynching recently.
“Today, we’re launching a test to limit forwarding that will apply to everyone using WhatsApp. In India – where people forward more messages, photos and videos than any other country in the world – we’ll also test a lower limit of five chats at once and we’ll remove the quick forward button next to media messages,” WhatsApp said on Friday.
“We believe that these changes – which we’ll continue to evaluate – will help keep WhatsApp the way it was designed to be; a private messaging app. We are deeply committed to your safety and privacy which is why WhatsApp is end-to-end encrypted, and we’ll continue to improve our app with features like this one,’ the messaging app firm said.
Mob lynchings triggered by false incendiary messages in India, led the authorities to call for steps to prevent the circulation of false texts and provocative content.
India is WhatsApp’s biggest market with more than 200 million users.
The move is likely to be a deterrent to mass forwarding of messages. Indians forward more messages, photos and videos than any other country in the world, according to WhatsApp.
Earlier this month, WhatsApp in response to a government’s note, said it required a partnership with the government as well as society in general to curb the spread of false information on its platform.
So far this year, false messages about child abductors on WhatsApp have triggered mob lynching of more than a dozen people in India and some of whom have died.