Validate Hoax Messages Using WhatsApp's New Feature

Advertisement
Advertisement

WhatsApp is one of the major instant messaging platforms. It is available across platforms and caters to over 2 billion users across the globe. Its security and privacy features have been put into question in the past. However, it still remains the go-to messaging app for users. And with more users, fake-news or information are on the rise. Previously, WhatsApp has had campaigns to urge users not to forward fake news or information. But there was no dedicated feature for it. That changes now because, in an official blog post, WhatsApp has announced that a new feature "Search Web" will help you tackle all the hoax messages.

The special "Forward label" in WhatsApp was the only way of knowing whether or not the message is forwarded. This feature lets the user know if the message has been forwarded for over 4 times. This feature, on a good scale, tried to bring down invalidated messages being spread over in WhatsApp. But now, the introduction of this new "WhatsApp Search Web" feature, users will be able to validate the information in any forwarded message.

Notably, a magnifying glass will be displayed in the chat. With the help of this magnifying glass, you will be able to conveniently fact-check the forwarded messages. This feature is very essential, especially in times of COVID-19 pandemic. Because a lot of muddy and misinformation is spreading via WhatsApp to misguide people.

Advertisement

 Users can upload the message via their browser without WhatsApp ever seeing the message itself

For those who are wondering how this works, when you receive a forwarded message, a magnifying glass icon will be displayed beside the message. When you tap on this icon, you will be asked if you would like to search the web for validation. Once you press the "search web" button, you will be redirected to a web browser to help you fact-check the message.

This is a good move taken by WhatsApp, without the need of banning forwards. Besides, this feature allows the users to validate the message, with little hassle. Notably, this new feature called "Search Web" is rolling out today for users in Brazil, Italy, Ireland, Mexico, Spain, UK, and the US. To enjoy this feature, WhatsApp users in the before-mentioned regions should update to the latest version of the WhatsApp for Android, iOS, and WhatsApp Web.

We expect this feature to be available for more regions in the coming days. Let us know your thoughts on whether this feature will help tackle fake information more conveniently or not.

Advertisement