In 2018, WhatsApp began introducing a “forwarded” mark on every message being sent globally from one chat to another and later restricted transmission of messages to 5 chats at once. After that, WhatsApp has again begun to restrict the forwarding of messages to avoid the dissemination of false news linked to coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19).
WhatsApp says the company has seen a huge rise in the number of forwarded messages and during this shutdown time it may contribute to the spread of false information. Consequently, a cap is imposed such that such messages can only be forwarded to one chat at a time.
Under the new restrictions in place, users who have repeatedly received messages that have been sent more than 5 times, can forward the specific message to only one contact / chat at a time. WhatsApp adds that at the time, the previous cap on distributing messages to curb virality resulted in a 25 per cent drop in global message forwarding.
In addition to this, WhatsApp is collaborating directly with governments, WHO, NGOs and over 20 national health ministries to provide users with accurate information. This is WhatsApp’s welcome change, as false information spreads faster and it makes sense to place a limit.
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