Facebook-owned messaging service wants to crack down on viral spread of hateful misinformation

WhatsApps users will only be able to forward messages to 20 people, as the Facebook-owned messaging service attempts to crack down on the viral spread of hateful misinformation.

In India, where false rumours about child abduction spread virally over WhatsApp, leading to several vigilante murders over the past year, the new limit will be even stricter: each message can be forwarded just five times. In that country, where according to Facebook “people forward more messages, photos, and videos than any other country in the world”, WhatsApp is also removing the “quick forward” feature, a button that appears next to photos, videos and links. The previous forwarding cap, rarely hit by users, was more than 250.

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