In this November 6, 2020 photo illustration, a user updates Facebook's WhatsApp application on their mobile phone in Mumbai.

In this November 6, 2020 photo illustration, a user updates Facebook’s WhatsApp application on their mobile phone in Mumbai.
photo:: Indranil Mukherjee / AFP ((Getty Images)

After creating a huge virtual meltdown with the announcement of its new privacy policy, WhatsApp has been trying for the past few weeks to postpone implementation of this policy due to online anger so as not to cause problems. However, it has just revealed What happens to users who do not accept the new privacy policy by May 15th?

WhatsApp has apparently emailed some of its merchant partners to inform them that users are “slowly” being asked to accept the new privacy policy “to ensure full functionality” of the app TechCrunchwho saw an email and confirmed its accuracy with WhatsApp. The email also pointed to a public WhatsApp FAQ Page titled “What happens on the Effective Date?”

The FAQ page states that WhatsApp will not delete the accounts of users who do not accept the new terms but cannot use them as normal.

“If you have not accepted by then, WhatsApp will not delete your account. However, you will not have the full functionality of WhatsApp until you accept it. For a short time you can receive calls and notifications, but not read or send messages from the app, ”wrote WhatsApp.

If that “for a short time” part Have you scratched your head? WhatsApp kind of worked it out. Users who do not accept the new privacy policy of May 15th is considered an inactive user and is subject WhatsApp’s existing policies on that frontas detailed below.

“To ensure security, limit data retention and protect the privacy of our users, WhatsApp accounts are generally deleted after 120 days of inactivity,” explains WhatsApp. “Content that was saved locally on a user’s device before the account was deleted will remain until WhatsApp is deleted from the device. If a user registers for WhatsApp again on the same device, their locally stored content will be displayed again. “

Now after reading this, it still wasn’t real Make it clear if WhatsApp would delete accounts of people who did not accept the privacy policy after 120 days. Gizmodo reached out to WhatsApp to ask for clarification. We will make sure this blog is updated whenever we hear anything.

WhatsApp not only bowed its head, but also try to calm down Users that it has no nefarious plans to share their personal information with its parent company Facebook. (It should be noted that tThe company has been sharing basic metadata with Facebook since 2016 (e.g. anonymous phone IDs). Just so it’s clear the new privacy policy of the app does not affect users Use the app to message friends and family right now. The changes only apply to companies that use WhatsApp to communicate with their customers.

On ThursdayWhatsApp announced it would display a banner on the app that would provide more information on its privacy policy, “which users can read at their own pace”.

“At some point we will remind people to review and accept these updates to keep using WhatsApp,” WhatsApp said.

Interestingly, WhatsApp mentioned in the announcement that it was important that people knew “how we can make WhatsApp available for free”. The company said it bills companies to provide “customer service” for the app and is engaging Facebook so companies can manage their inventory across apps.

While some users may be outraged WhatsApp’s now Privacy Policy – which, we will recall, currently has no impact on individual users – this business update is an important reminder that few things in technology are ever truly free. When a service or app claims to be free, don’t forget that you probably are pay for it with your data.

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