Because you don’t care who’s looking for a roommate.
We’ve all been there: the dreaded WhatsApp group we never wanted to be a part of. Maybe it was a random acquaintance who added you to a group of 30 because he *DESPERATELY LOOKING FOR A ROOMMATE ASAP* and now you’re being pinged with messages every five minutes from people you don’t know to talk about stuff you couldn’t care less about.
The best news out of Facebook this year is that the company is finally putting an end to letting anyone add you to a WhatsApp group without your permission. The company has announced that it is adding a setting in WhatsApp that allows users to set who, if anyone, can add them to a group.
“Great news!” You say, “So how do I do it?” Here’s how:
- In WhatsApp, tap Settings.
- Now tap Accounts.
- Now tap Privacy.
- Tap the menu that says Groups.
- This will take you to the Group’s privacy screen that gives you three settings. Select either Everyone, My contacts, or Nobody.
- Tap Done and the settings will be saved.
Here’s what the three options mean:
- Everyone: this setting essentially keeps things as they are now. Anyone on WhatsApp can add you to a group no matter if you want to be in that group or not. Basically, this is zero privacy.
- My Contacts: this setting gives anyone whose number who have saved in your phone’s address book the ability to add you to a group. This is mid-range privacy as only known people can add you to a group.
- Nobody: This is the option most people will want to use. Choosing this setting means no one will be able to add you to a group automatically.
But don’t worry if you set your group privacy settings to “nobody.” You’ll still be able to join groups. If “Nobody” is set, the group’s creator will be able to send you a link in a private message asking you to join the group. If you click on this link within 72 hours, you’ll be added to the group. If not, the link will expire and that group isn’t your problem.
The new group privacy feature has begun rolling out globally for all users. If you don’t see it right now, you should be able to soon.
Apple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.