Make double check before sharing messages: WhatsApp

Make double check before sharing messages: WhatsApp

WhatsApp messaging platform on Wednesday said it is rolling out educational videos in India asking users to "double check" facts before sharing messages as the company is facing criticism over the circulation of fake news.

The videos, in Hindi and English, will be available on Facebook — the parent company of WhatsApp as the messaging platform working to combat a flurry of fake messages that allegedly prompted mob lynching in the country.

"WhatsApp is expanding its user education campaign on how to spot fake news and hoaxes. This week, WhatsApp is publishing a new video that explains the importance of the "forward" label and calls users to double check the facts when they are not sure who created the original message," WhatsApp said elaborating on the 27-second video clip.

Earlier, the company published advertisements in newspapers where it urged the users to check the authenticity of messages before forwarding it and cautioned them about the spreading of fake news. Recently, it also introduced the forward label and also limited the forwarding of messages to 5 people at one go.

The Department of Telecom had earlier sent two notices to the firm asking it to take concrete steps to check to spread of fake news and warned that it will treat the messaging platform as ‘abettor’ of rumour propagation and legal consequences will follow if adequate checks are not put in place.

As part of its efforts to fight against fake news, WhatsApp has also said that it is building an India-based team and that it believes the challenge of mob violence requires government, civil society, and technology companies to work together.

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