Facebook Messenger limits forwarding messages to five people
Facebook Messenger limits forwarding messages to five people to combat misinformation or circulation of fake news. In accordance with the latest update, now a message (photo, video or typed message) can be forwarded to only five chats (personal or group chats) at once on the messaging app of Facebook.
Jay Sullivan, Director of Product Management, Messenger Privacy and Safety at Facebook said, “Limiting forwarding is an effective way to slow the spread of viral misinformation and harmful content that has the potential to cause real world harm”.
The blog listed various important upcoming events like the elections in the United States and New Zealand along with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as some of the reasons why rampant forwarding of unverified messages on social media sites can lead to the spread of false information.
It also asked people to refer to its Coronavirus (COVID-19) Community Hub in order to gain correct news regarding the viral outbreak. The hub advises users to “verify facts with trusted official sources and watch out for people running scams such as unapproved medical treatments or false fundraisers”. Most importantly, it asks users to not share something if they are not sure about its authenticity.
Facebook believes that the new feature will provide an added layer of protection against “viral misinformation or harmful content” spreading online. This feature comes in addition to the introduction of safety notifications, the two-factor authentication method, and new ways of blocking and reporting unwanted messages.