Earlier this year, a series of violent mob attacks, fuelled by misinformation circulated via WhatsApp, left a painful number of people dead in India. Ever since then, WhatsApp has been under the users’ and State’s scrutiny to make changes to its platforms to tackle the ‘deadly’ issue at hand.
After releasing a series of ads in newspapers, rolling out a forward message label, and limiting the ability to forward texts, on Monday, WhatsApp hired Komal Lahiri as its grievance officer for India.
What this means for a regular user is that you can now lodge complaints through the WhatsApp app, send an email, or write to the grievance officer. The idea is to allow the report centre to be more approachable and being able to address issues urgently.
If you ever face any issue on the messenger or someone sends you objectionable content and doesn’t budge even after you tell them off or if you are being wrongly defamed or in case you see any illegal, offensive obscene messages being exchanged, you can now immediately report or write to the grievance officer.
Here’s how you go about doing that.
Register complaints via the app
Registering complaints via the WhatsApp Messenger itself is quite easy. To do that, launch WhatsApp, head to Settings > Help > Contact Us. All WhatsApp users in India will now see this new page, which lets you write in what your complaint is regarding. You can also add screenshots to the complaint, to attach proof. Once done, tap on next and your complaint is registered.
Register complaints via email
To register complaints via email, you can send a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do note, WhatsApp directs in its FAQs that these complaint emails must carry an electronic signature. There are apps like DocuSign and Adobe Sign that are available for free on both Android and iOS, and let you digitally sign on your phone or tablet.
Further, WhatsApp mentions that if you contact them regarding a specific account, then you must include your phone number in full international format, including the country code. [example +91 916xxxxxx0].
Register complaints via post
If you choose to post your complaint to the grievance officer in a letter, you can send in the mail to:
Attention: Grievance Officer
1601 Willow Road
Menlo Park, California 94025
United States of America
Don’t be pressured, and don’t be scared, if someone or something on the platform is bothering you or somebody you know, speak up and report the issue.