The company in association with the IFCN also provides a list of numbers and a chatbot for fact-checking.
On Tuesday, WhatsApp announced another significant step towards fighting the infodemic. The company said that it would add a search feature, making it easier for users to fact-check messages. Although WhatsApp will still not be able to read the contents of the message, it has devised a safe way for consumers to search it on the web. Earlier in April, it had announced new limits on the forwarding of viral messages. Before that in March, it had announced a grant of $1 million to the Poynter Institute’s International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) as part of its #CoronaVirusFacts Alliance. The company in association with the IFCN also provides a list of numbers and a chatbot for fact-checking.
Although, WhatsApp being a messaging service has been somewhat shielded from the ire of authorities with regards to the spread of fake news—Twitter and Facebook by virtue of being social media platforms have been the target—the platform still had to weather criticism given its role in modern communication. WhatsApp, however, has been doing its bit by continually upgrading its systems. Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have incorporated artificial intelligence and machine learning to detect deep fakes. But, more investment in technology is needed to curb the spread of misinformation. Twitter, earlier this year, revived its defunct fact check system. Most social media companies and messaging services have fared well on the coronavirus front, but the US elections will be a litmus test.