In the “post-truth” world that we have all found ourselves in, there has been increasing pressure on several tech giants whose products and services we use and which have also been used to advance a lot of the misinformation that has characterized several happenings over the last few years, the most notable being civic exercises like elections in various countries.
For Facebook, the owner of popular messaging app WhatsApp, the blame has been much greater not only for its main application and social network but also for WhatsApp owing to its popularity around the world.
As such, mid last year, WhatsApp announced several measures aimed at keeping a lid on things, much as that may appear to be in vain. In fact, if anything, at least according to WhatsApp, things have worked out so well and that has buoyed its spirits to take the next step: make good its threat (can we call it that?) to users last year to limit simultaneous forwarding of chats to just 5 at once.
While this is a big blow to those that like forwarding anything and everything will experience a rather slowed down process that will frustrate their efforts to do so, something that may come as a relief to those that don’t like such as well as helping to, in a way, curb the spread of misinformation in the world. WhatsApp is also citing the need to maintain WhatsApp as a means for users to chat privately with those close to them and not as a conduit for reaching anyone and everyone.
It will be interesting to see how this is received by users around the world. Now, where was WhatsApp before the just-concluded Christmas holiday season kicked in?