WhatsApp is waging a war on false information and stepping up actions to try to stem the phenomenon on its platform. Earlier this year, in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, the messaging had chosen to limit the number of discussions to which it was possible to forward a message.
To strengthen its fight against the spread of misinformation, WhatsApp has just launched a feature.
Identify forwarded messages and search the web
Now, when a message that has been forwarded many times arrives on a user’s account, that user can easily identify it. A new icon with a double arrow followed by the words “Forwarded” is now displayed at the top of forwarded messages that were not written by the person who sent the said message.
But WhatsApp goes even further by integrating an Internet search tool into its messaging. To encourage users to check the sometimes questionable information they receive in messaging, WhatsApp offers the possibility of searching for the contents of the message on Google.
By tapping on the magnifying glass icon, right next to the message, they can query Google with the content of the message. Users will find additional information and sources there regarding the content of the message received, making it easier to identify fakes news.
This new functionality is already available in the US, Mexico, Brazil, Spain, Ireland, Italy and the UK, on Android, iOS and on the web.
For France, we will probably have to wait a little longer, as WhatsApp has not yet indicated an availability date in France.