The Meta-owned service has been around for over a decade now, and group chats have been a WhatsApp feature since 2011. However, group administrators don’t have much control over the chat itself. To fix this for good, we learned WhatsApp is beta testing powerful controls, so administrators can delete messages sent by other members.
Presently WhatsApp group administrators can only boot members and control who joins, who can send messages, and how disappearing messages are configured. Tools for moderating activity in the chat are extremely limited, and it’s currently not possible to delete messages. Interestingly, the company is testing that exact capability.
WABetaInfo reports upcoming builds of the messaging app could let group admins delete messages sent by participants, simply by long-tapping them and selecting the ‘delete for everyone’ option. The chat will retain a placeholder for the deleted message mentioning the name of the administrator who deleted it. This will make it clear to all participants that it was an action performed by administrators and not the original sender.
WhatsApp isn’t introducing a new or novel feature here. It is merely catching up to rival feature-rich services such as Telegram and Discord. The feature isn’t even entirely new to WhatsApp itself. We saw it first in December, and again in May during what seemed like internal testing. It’s now a part of the public beta channel.
Pardon has been a technology enthusiast his entire life and has spent the better part of last decades in information technology and security, and he writes with an aim to remove some of the "mysticism" from the cyber world. He’s the Editor at Techunzipped. Away from the keyboard, you're likely to find him playing with the latest gadgets or the latest Game.