Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and others are trying to fight fake news and forward messages which people spread. Sometimes, the fake news causes a lot of trouble even when there is nothing happening around. Hence, removing the fake news from the internet will help people know the world better. For doing so, Google launched Google News a while ago. Microsoft too launched their own version of News to tackle the fake news on the internet. Facebook recently bought an AI company to help detect fake news.
WhatsApp Tackling Fake News
WhatsApp, owned by Facebook also brought in ‘Forward Label’ to avoid unnecessary forward which people receive. If a person sends a message which they received from someone, it will be labeled automatically. Hence, people who send forwards in their name will be easily identifiable. In many cases, such messages are used to spread fake news which can be avoided.
One of the major reasons why WhatsApp took this measure is because the fake forwards caused a problem in India. The Government of India addressed the company of such an issue and they reacted. News regarding the kidnapping and such causes a spread of havoc within the family and the area. Hence, the government wanted the company to have some methods to prevent all these.
Why WhatsApp Introduced Forward Label?
Many people might be wondering that with the advancement of technology and AI, WhatsApp can easily detect the fake news. Yes, it is true but since WhatsApp provides end-to-end encryption of messages, they cannot read the message. Hence, they introduced the Forward Label for messages which are being sent by the users which they received.
But, there can be more to it. For example, if a person receives a forward and knows it is fake, they can mark it as fake. Hence, WhatsApp can easily check the label and prevent the user from forwarding the message. But, that is a very basic step. People can copy the text to their notes and then paste it without even having the forward label. The person who receives the message can easily take it as some serious message.
WhatsApp did take an initiative to fight fake forwards but that is not it. People can easily copy the messages and paste it again which will be viewed as an original message. There will be no proof of the message being fake or true. One guy has suggested for using a unique ID for each message. Hence, when a problem arises, the message can be traced back to the origin by the company. In such cases, WhatsApp can easily delete the message with the same unique ID from every device.
But, WhatsApp has restricted itself. Since it is providing the users total encryption and privacy, it cannot do much about the fake news. The ‘Forward Label’ introduced by WhatsApp might be good but not much efficient. WhatsApp has to come up with some other way to tackle fake news and forward messages more efficiently.