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What is the ‘demote’ feature of WhatsApp?

The 'demote' and 'restricted group' features are WhatsApp's upcoming work

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The Facebook-owned app is developing a new 'demote' button. Pexels
The Facebook-owned app is developing a new 'demote' button. Pexels
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  • WhatsApp works on more features after reports say security can be breached.
  • The new ‘demote’ feature is being tested for iOS and Android.
  • ‘Restricted Groups’ setting submitted via Google Play Beta Programme in the version 2.17.430.

Reportedly, WhatsApp is testing a new button in group chats. The button will allow one administrator to ‘demote’ other administrators, without deleting them from the group.

Currently, when an administrator wishes to remove another administrator, s/he has to directly remove the concerned administrator from the group and then add him/her again.

The restricted group feature will only allow administrators to post media and chat. Pixabay
The restricted group feature will only allow administrators to post media and chat. Pixabay

WhatsApp is testing the feature both for iOS as well as Android.

Following research of cryptographers from Ruhr University which state WhatsApp group chat isn’t safe, the app is likely to give group administrators more powers where they would be able to restrict other members from any activity without permission.

Read more: Is WhatsApp safe?

This setting could only be activated by group administrators, where they would be able to share media and chat normally.

Other members will just simply read their messages and won’t be able to respond. A ‘Message Admin’ button would be there to post a message or share media to the group. The message will be needed to be approved by the administrator before going to the group.

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WhatsApp Partners With DEF To Train Community Leaders in Order To Tackle Fake News

The teams will also cover key states such as, West Bengal, Assam, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tripura and Jharkhand by March 2019, the statement said

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WhatsApp, DEF train community leaders to tackle fake news. Pixabay

Aiming to address the challenge of misinformation during the upcomimg Rajasthan Assembly polls, WhatsApp on Monday conducted training for community leaders here, in partnership with the Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF), the Facebook-owned mobile messaging platform said.

The education workshop encouraged WhatsApp users to see themselves as “agents of change” by addressing socio-behavioural change and empowered them to spot false news.

The training will also enable them to differentiate between rumours and opinions; shared subsequent steps to tackle instances of false news and tips to stay safe on WhatsApp.

“WhatsApp is proud to have played a part in helping millions of people in Rajasthan to freely connect with their loved ones anywhere in the world. These trainings are a key part of our strategy to help people stay safe and limit the spread of harmful rumours this election season” said Ben Supple, Public Policy Manager, WhatsApp, in a statement.

The curriculum further delved into how users can contact fact-checking organisations like Altnews and Boom Live to accurately verify information when they are in doubt.

The training was attended by over 100 participants including from local government administrations, law enforcement authorities, college students, NGOs and community leaders who are dedicated to the technological empowerment of their society, especially villages and semi-urban centre.

WhatsApp
WhatsApp on a smartphone device.

“While the problem of misinformation is not restricted to rural areas alone, it is the rural population that majorly lacks access to alternative news sources for sake of verification,” said Osama Manzar, Founder and Director, DEF.

“We see education as the only solution to this problem, and we know that when we teach them some basic verification techniques, they’re going to tell at least two other people about it, creating a ripple effect and potentially fighting misinformation.”

Additionally, WhatsApp and DEF will organise workshops as a part of their Community Information Resource Centre (CIRC), where they will conduct training sessions targeted at grassroots communities in rural areas across five states in India, the company said.

In August, WhatsApp was asked by the central government to take steps to stop the spread of disinformation on its platform.

Also Read- Migraine With Visual Aura May Increase Risk of Irregular Heartbeat

WhatsApp roped in New Delhi-based non-profit DEF and initiated a series of educational workshops in 10 key election states including Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Telangana.

The teams will also cover key states such as, West Bengal, Assam, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tripura and Jharkhand by March 2019, the statement said. (IANS)