With WhatsApp's clarifications being received with skepticism, the chat app has pushed the deadline for accepting its new Terms of Service (ToS) forward by three months. Users now have until May 15 to accept the updated ToS. The messaging service could have lost some users to rival communication platforms like Telegram and Signal. But it's hard to gauge the actual impact without official figures.
WhatsApp recently made a blog post claiming to have heard user concerns, which has evidently failed to elicit user trust. People want their WhatsApp accounts separate from Facebook, and aren't happy with data being shared between the platforms. The tone of WhatsApp's original notification, however, clearly implied the parent company's intention of sharing user data with sister concerns such as Facebook.
WhatsApp might have a near-monopoly in the personal communications space, but internet-savvy users have also shown willingness to move to other platforms. The panic is apparent as Twitter accounts of Instagram chief Adam Mosseri and WhatsApp head Will Cathcart were pressed into fire control mode. Their posts had a common thread voicing the platform's intent to clear misunderstandings over the next three months.
In what sounds like platitudes spread across official blog posts and tweets, WhatsApp said it wants to help users "understand principles and facts". The service added it is willing to provide "further transparency" about the collection of user data. WhatsApp also expressed a willingness to cooperate with the Indian Government following the news that the IT Ministry was discussing this matter internally.