Whatsapp is now starting to label forwarded messages to prevent deadly misinformation from spreading far and wide.
Fake Whatsapp messages have erupted mob violence in India, leaving eight lynched to death. Whatsapp is now ensuing its battle to spread deadly misinformation. It is currently testing a feature to mark suspicious links and spam posts. Before the link detection feature rolls out, the messaging platform has started labeling forwarded messages.
Whatsapp announced this new label in a blog post, explaining that the label will indicate if the message has been constructed by a user or forwarded from another user source. The label will apply to all messages being forwarded on Whatsapp, be it text, image, video, or audio messages. All users who have the latest updated version of Whatsapp will be able to see this label on forwarded messages.
While the label may seem just a small modification for the messaging platform, it could immensely help users to identify dubious content from authentic information being shared over the app. The label is indicated below in the screenshot included in the official blog post.
Before launching the feature for all the global users, Whatsapp initially beta tested the labels in India and Brazil – the two countries linked to the spread of dangerous fake rumors. The update is just one of the steps that Whatsapp has taken to fight misinformation and fake rumors going viral. it also started offering cash rewards to researchers to tackle fake news. The app’s parent company Facebook, has also acquired an AI team from a UK startup to fact check misinformation going viral on the platform.