‘Restricted Groups’ feature may allow WhatsApp’s group admins to silence members


WhatsApp is testing a new ‘Restricted Groups’ feature which will give the group administrator more powers. As per the report from WABetaInfo, the messaging platform has submitted the “Restricted Groups” setting via Google Play Beta programme in the version 2.17.430.

Basically, the new feature promises to give the admins more control in a group chat. The report said that the administrator is free to restrict a member from sending text messages, photographs, GIFs, or voice messages. Once restricted, the user can use the ‘Message Admin’ button to send a message to the group and will be able to send message to the administrator of the group, who will ultimately decide whether it will be seen by other members of the group – or rejected completely.

The Restricted group feature can be enabled by anyone with an administrator authority within the group chat. The settings can be changed every 72 hours, i.e. group members can be silenced for a few hours at a time.

WABetaInfo, which tracks impending WhatsApp features, wrote: “WhatsApp will avert the group creator to be deleted from the group by other administrators. This will help the group creator to be in command of the group. The administrators will be able to choose if other participants can change the subject of the group, its icon and its description.”

The feature is currently supported by Android and iOS beta, but WhatsApp has disabled it on its servers. At the moment, WhatsApp group administrator has the authority to add new members to the group. Members are free to post anything in the group.