fbpx
News

WhatsApp Ads Warn India After Mob Lynchings [Video]

After hoax messages circulated on WhatsApp triggered several incidents of mob lynchings in recent weeks in India, the Facebook-owned messaging platform published full-page advertisements in leading Indian newspapers advising users on how to identify false information.

The ads, published in English- and Hindi-language newspapers on Tuesday, came soon after Indian authorities asked WhatsApp to act immediately to curb the spread of false information.

Since May the lynchings of at least 24 people accused of being child kidnappers have been linked to the platform, used by more than 200 million Indians. Many other accused child kidnappers survived dozens of other mob attacks with injuries. Police found that mass-circulated WhatsApp messages carrying fake information about child kidnappers being on the prowl in the areas triggered almost all the attacks.

Last week, after Indian government sought “immediate action” from WhatsApp to stem the flow of false information, the company said it was “horrified” by the “terrible acts of violence” and would act to curb its abuse.

The full-page newspaper advertisements began with the line “Together we can fight false information” and carried 10 tips on how to spot fake news.

The tips included checking information with other sources, looking at photos carefully because they could be edited in a misleading way and thinking twice before sharing a message if you are not sure it is true.

“Fake news often goes viral,” read one tip while noting “Just because a message is shared many times does not make it true.”

This week WhatsApp also added a new feature which will label all forward messages as such, to let the receivers know that it was not created by the sender.

WhatsApp also said it had started an “education campaign” in India to spot fake news and rumours. “Our first step is placing newspaper advertisements in English and Hindi and several other languages,” the statement said. “We will build on these efforts.”

This story originally appeared in The Guardian. Image courtesy of Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Images.

Join The Discussion

EU Divorce Deal Thrown Into Doubt As Brexit Minister Resigns
EU Divorce Deal Thrown Into Doubt As Brexit Minister Resigns [Video]
At Least 56 Killed, 130 Missing In California's Deadliest Wildfire
At Least 56 Killed, 130 Missing In California’s Deadliest Wildfire [Video]
Child Muay Thai Debated In Thailand After 13-Year-Old Dies
Child Muay Thai Debated In Thailand After 13-Year-Old Dies
Is The Trump-Macron 'Bromance' Over
Is The Trump-Macron ‘Bromance’ Over? [Video]
Bitcoin Dips Below $5,400 For The First Time In 2018
Bitcoin Dips Below $5,400 For The First Time In 2018
Crypto Market Drops In $8B Bloodbath
Crypto Market Drops In $8B Bloodbath
Philippine Central Bank To ‘Study Crypto’ Before Issuing Rules
Philippine Central Bank To ‘Study Crypto’ Before Issuing Rules
IMF Says Governments Could Set Up Their Own Cryptocurrencies
IMF Says Governments Could Set Up Their Own Cryptocurrencies
How To Build A Social Media Following Of 1 Million In 30 Days
How To Build A Social Media Following Of 1 Million In 30 Days
5 Tips To Grow Your YouTube Channel In 2019
5 Tips To Grow Your YouTube Channel In 2019 [Video]
How 30 Major Businesses Use Instagram Stories
How 30 Major Businesses Use Instagram Stories [Infographic]
7 Ways to Use Pinterest to Drive Business Results
7 Ways to Use Pinterest to Drive Business Results [Infographic]
Facebook Releases New Report Into Travel Booking Trends [Infographic]
LinkedIn Continues To Re-Focus on Groups
LinkedIn Continues To Re-Focus On Groups And Infrastructure
Instagram Cashes In On Promote For Stories And Fresh Analytics
Instagram Cashes In On Promote For Stories And Fresh Analytics
WhatsApp's Planning To Roll Out Ads In WhatsApp Status
WhatsApp’s Planning To Roll Out Ads In WhatsApp Status
Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds with David Goggins
Master Your Mind And Defy The Odds [Podcast]
Priming Your Brain For Success Through Sleep
Priming Your Brain For Success Through Sleep
What “Bohemian Rhapsody” Teaches Us About Living A Braver, Bolder Life
What “Bohemian Rhapsody” Teaches Us About Living A Braver, Bolder Life
6 Signs You’ve Outgrown Someone In Your Life
6 Signs You’ve Outgrown Someone In Your Life
EU Divorce Deal Thrown Into Doubt As Brexit Minister Resigns
EU Divorce Deal Thrown Into Doubt As Brexit Minister Resigns [Video]
At Least 56 Killed, 130 Missing In California's Deadliest Wildfire
At Least 56 Killed, 130 Missing In California’s Deadliest Wildfire [Video]
Is The Trump-Macron 'Bromance' Over
Is The Trump-Macron ‘Bromance’ Over? [Video]
5 Tips To Grow Your YouTube Channel In 2019
5 Tips To Grow Your YouTube Channel In 2019 [Video]