Tuesday March 26, 2019
Home Lead Story In a Bid to T...

In a Bid to Tackle Fake News, WhatsApp Launches Second Phase of Radio Ad Campaign in India

WhatsApp has also taken some technological measures to curb the problem of disinformation, including the introduction of the "forwarded" tag and limiting forwarding to five chats at once

0
//
WhatsApp
WhatsApp working on fingerprint authentication for chats: Report. Pixabay

After being pulled up by the government to take concrete steps to stop the spread of misinformation and fake news on its platform, Facebook-owned WhatsApp on Wednesday said it has launched the second phase of its radio ad campaign in the country to create awareness and empower users.

The first phase of the educational campaign was kicked off on August 29 with ads across 46 radio stations of All India Radio (AIR) in states like Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

The second phase of the campaign started on Wednesday on September 5 with radio ads across 83 AIR radio stations in Assam, Tripura, West Bengal, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, Orissa and Tamil Nadu.

These campaigns will run in eight regional languages — Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Marathi, Telugu, Oriya and Tamil — for a 15-day duration, WhatsApp said in a statement.

The campaign has been designed in an easy to understand format to help user’s spot misinformation and further sensitize them about the challenges of fake news and addressing these as a society.

WhatsApp
WhatsApp to train users on dangers of fake news as well.

“WhatsApp stands committed in its efforts to address these issues jointly with civil society, stakeholders and the government,” the company said.

These radio campaign highlights tips like understand when a message is “forwarded”; check information that seems unbelievable and photos carefully; question information that upsets you and be thoughtful about what you share.

WhatsApp has also roped in New Delhi-based non-profit Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) to create awareness among its users about the need to verify information.

“Our goal is to help keep people safe by creating greater awareness about fake news and empowering users to help limit its spread,” Ben Supple, Public Policy Manager at WhatsApp, said in a statement.

As part of the new partnership with WhatsApp, DEF has committed to holding 40 training sessions for community leaders in 10 states across the country where there have been worrisome cases of violence and where there will be state polls before the end of the year.

WhatsApp
WhatsApp on a smartphone device. Pixabay

In a meeting with WhatsApp CEO Chris Daniels on August 21, Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad instructed the Facebook-owned platform to comply with the law of the land and take “suitable” steps to prevent its misuse.

The meeting took place after several lynching incidents were linked to the spread of misinformation on the instant messaging platform which has over 200 million monthly active users in India.

Also Read- Exercising Too Little Puts Your Health At Risk: WHO

WhatsApp has also taken some technological measures to curb the problem of disinformation, including the introduction of the “forwarded” tag and limiting forwarding to five chats at once.

“In addition to the steps we are taking within WhatsApp, we believe impacting lives through the power of education is critical to helping achieve the vision of a ‘Digital India’,” Supple added. (IANS)

Next Story

Whatsapp Launches 2nd Leg of ‘Share Joy, Not Rumours’ Education Campaign to Fight Fake News

The first phase of the campaign successfully reached hundreds of millions Indians in both rural and urban areas

0
whatsapp
WhatsApp has made a series of changes, including labeling forwarded messages to inform users when they have received something not from their immediate contacts. Pixabay

Facebook-owned WhatsApp on Monday launched the second-leg of its “Share Joy, Not Rumours” education campaign to encourage the responsible use of its platform ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.

In addition to the earlier TV, print and radio ads, the new campaign would educate people on the controls available in WhatsApp so they are empowered to stop the spread of misinformation, the company said in a statement.

whatsapp
The new campaign would educate people on the controls available in WhatsApp so they are empowered to stop the spread of misinformation. Pixabay

The first phase of the campaign successfully reached hundreds of millions Indians in both rural and urban areas, claimed the company, adding that the messaging platform is building on the campaign with a second round focused on supporting a safe election process.

“Proactively working with the Election Committee and local partners for a safe election is our top priority. Expanding our education campaign to help people easily identify and stop malicious messages is another step towards improving the safety of our users,” said Abhijit Bose, Head of India, WhatsApp.

WhatsApp’s digital literacy partners, including DEF and NASSCOM, would share these videos to grow awareness among the people while the print ads are aimed to act as reminders on how to spot, verify and stop sharing of misinformation that can cause harmful outcomes during the sensitive period of polling.

whatsapp
The first phase of the campaign successfully reached hundreds of millions Indians in both rural and urban areas. Pixabay

ALSO READ: Whatsapp will Now Let Users Know How Many Times a Message has been Forwarded

Over the last several months, WhatsApp has made a series of changes, including labeling forwarded messages to inform users when they have received something not from their immediate contacts and set a limit on how forwarded messages can be sent. In addition, WhatsApp bans accounts that engage in unwanted automated activity.

WhatsApp, including other social media firms, will now have to process any request from the Election Commission of India to take down content within three hours during the 48-hour period before voting days. (IANS)