Being an admin in a WhatsApp chat is for many not a big deal. Basically it allows you to add or remove people from the group. However over in India, being a WhatsApp admin of a group chat could soon mean more responsibility. In a report from the Economic Times (via CNET), the Indian government wants to make WhatsApp admins more accountable.
According to a ruling by an Indian magistrate, WhatsApp group admins could be held liable for factually incorrect or fake news that is being shared within the group, which could in turn lead to a report to the police against the group’s administrator. The goal of this is to help curb the spread of false information.
The ruling states that admins are responsible to remove members in the group that were found to have been spreading the false information, and failure to do so could potentially result in action being taken against them. Given how some are claiming that the spread of fake news impacted the US presidential elections, it is not surprising that more governments are looking to crack down on it.
Recently it was also reported that France was being flooded with fake news created by automated accounts ahead of the country’s elections.