Business Standard

Fake news in elections: Now tip off WhatsApp about it using 'tipline'

People in India can submit misinformation or rumours to the 'Checkpoint Tipline on WhatsApp' at +91-9643-000-888

IANS  |  New Delhi 

Photo: Reuters

on Tuesday launched a service in where over 200 million users in the country can tip off fake news, and rumours related to elections.

Launched by PROTO, a media skilling start-up, the tipline will help create a database of rumours to study during elections for Checkpoint -- a research project commissioned by WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned company said in a statement.

People in can submit or rumours to the "on WhatsApp" at +91-9643-000-888.

Media and Meedan, who have previously worked on misinformation-related projects around the world, are helping PROTO to develop the verification and research frameworks for

"The goal of this project is to study the misinformation phenomenon at scale -- natively in WhatsApp," said PROTO's founders and

When a user shares a suspicious message with the tipline, PROTO's verification centre will seek to respond and inform the user if the claim made in the message shared is verified or not.

The response will indicate if information is classified as true, false, misleading, disputed or out of scope and include any other related information that is available.

"The centre can review rumours in the form of pictures, video links or text and will cover four regional languages including Hindi, Telugu, Bengali and Malayalam, other than English," said

Following the project, PROTO aims to submit learnings to the to help other organisations learn from the design and operations of this project.

"The research from this initiative will help create a global benchmark for those wishing to tackle misinformation in their own markets," said Fergus Bell, Founder and CEO, Media.


First Published: Tue, April 02 2019. 12:12 IST