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WhatsApp introduces new restriction to fight fake news

Amadin Ogbewe

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The Social messaging app WhatsApp has announced a new restriction of limiting the number of times a user can forward a message to five in an attempt to fight fake news and misinformation.

Previously, a WhatsApp user could forward a message to 20 individuals or groups.

WhatsApp which is owned by Facebook announced this on Monday at an event in Jakarta

“We’re imposing a limit of five messages all over the world as of today,” Victoria Grand, vice president for policy and communications at WhatsApp, said at an event in the Indonesian capital.

The development became necessary after the spread of false information and rumors led to death of nearly 20 persons in India where the restriction became effected. 

The app also aided the spread of misinformation during the Brazilian elections and was used to mobilise support for a massive truckers strike in Brazil during May 2018.

The truckers strike blocked the country’s main roadways for about 10 days and hampered everything from fuel deliveries to gas stations to shipments of commodities at ports.

The update will be available on Monday with android users receiving if first before Apple IOS. 

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