WhatsApp has been receiving a lot of criticism in India when it failed to control the spread of fake news. Now the company has launched three new TV commercials in India in order to spread awareness about the issue. The company hopes these commercials will help bring awareness amongst WhatsApp users in India.
These commercials will be broadcast across TV, Facebook and YouTube and in 10 local languages under the campaign “Share Joy Not Rumors”. The ads are slated to be aired by the Facebook-owned company just before the Rajasthan and Telangana state elections.
Earlier WhatsApp has faced a lot of criticism when fake videos and messages spread via its platform. This lead to several untoward incidents like lynching in India. The Indian government had urged the social media service to come up with preventive measures to curb the spread of fake news. One of the suggestions also included WhatsApp setting up an office in India to tackle this issue.
Now with these ads, WhatsApp plans to tackle the issue where it will address the issue of forwarding fake news and posting rumors on WhatsApp groups. These ads will make the user aware of the need to verify the uncertain information received from unknown sources.
WhatsApp also has taken this issue seriously, already a grievance officer was appointed in September along with a country head for India last month.
Now WhatsApp has also set a forward limit on the platform, in order to control the mass forwarding of messages. This will minimise the spread of fake news.
Apart from this WhatsApp has also issued ads in newspapers and radio. Efforts have also been taken to enact street shows to educate people about the spread of misinformation on WhatsApp.
WhatsApp has also enlisted steps on the topic of fake news on its page dedicated for India. They hope there will certainly be a reduction in the spread of misinformation via WhatsApp and people can use the app fearlessly.