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    WhatsApp Beta Tests New Temporary Chat Restrictions

    What’s the news:

    WhatsApp beta is working on a new account restriction feature to keep user accounts from sending messages. The feature, set for release in a future update of the beta version of the app, restricts users from starting new chats for a certain amount of time as a temporary penalty for specific violations. However, the restricted users will still be able to receive messages and reply to them from existing chats and groups.

    Restriction feature to help all users:

    Previously, WhatsApp beta for Android announced that it was working on a feature to allow channel owners to request a review for their suspended channels. The goal was to give channel owners a process for resolving critical issues with their channels. Stating that this new feature too seeks to offer “a consistent experience for all users, not just for channel-related issues,” WhatsApp beta said:

    “In our opinion, this feature serves as a balanced alternative to outright account bans, which could result in the loss of important data and communications. By imposing a temporary restriction, WhatsApp can address problematic behaviour without permanently banning users from using WhatsApp… The goal is to promote responsible use of the platform, ensuring that everyone can connect and communicate without encountering spam, abuse, or other disruptive activities. We believe that this new feature will bring a more flexible approach to moderation, allowing for targeted interventions without resorting to complete account bans.”

    New feature to help correct behaviour, says platform:

    According to WhatsApp beta, the automatic tools it uses to detect abusive spam-like behavior, automated or bulk messaging, or other activities that violate its terms of service. These tools cannot access users’ messages and calls, as they are end-to-end encrypted. The platform checks for specific behavioral patterns to detect suspicious activities, such as the frequency of message sending or whether automated scripts are being used.

    “This automatic detection helps identify accounts exhibiting potentially harmful conduct. By restricting accounts rather than outright banning them, WhatsApp aims to offer users an opportunity to correct their behavior without causing them to lose access to their data entirely,” said WhatsApp beta, adding that it will share another article on the new feature once there is additional information.


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