WhatsApp limits recipients of forwarded messages to curb fake news

WhatsApp Messenger, popular text messaging service, has reduced messages a user can forward to five recipients, in an effort to reduce the spread of false information.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that WhatsApp Messenger, acclaimed to be the world’s most popular messaging app, is a freeware and cross-platform messaging and Voice over IP (VoIP) service owned by Facebook.

The application allows the sending of text messages and voice calls, as well as video calls, images and other media, documents, and user location.

Previously, users could forward messages to up to 20 recipients, but now the limit will be five.

According to USA TODAY, from Monday, all users on the latest versions of WhatsApp can now forward to only five chats at once.

“Like Facebook, which has been battling misuse on its platform, with 1.5 billion users – is also fighting to wipe out fake information on the social network.

“Despite five sounding like a small number,The Verge points out that messages could still get forwarded to groups, which can have as many as 256 people.

“That means a forwarded message could be put in front of nearly 1,300 people, despite the five time limit.”

It added that WhatsApp carefully evaluated this test and listened to user feedback over six months.

One comment

  1. It is disheartening and unfortunate that WhatsApp has incapacitated the users of its platform by this action. Reason given is VERY MYOPIC. Even if only one chance is given, “fake news” will still be transmitted if one has such an intention.
    However, it should note that some persons, including myself, use the services for good purposes. Therefore, reducing the scope from 256 to 20 was uncalled for and still going down to just 5 is also uncalled for and is most unfortunate.
    My humble appeal is that WhatsApp should facilitate communication in this era by going back to the original 256.

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