New research from YouGov commissioned by WhatsApp reveals the power of a private message, as almost three quarters of women across the world (73%) and 68% of women in India say they would open up about their struggles if a friend reached out to them in private. WhatsApp believes everyone should have a safe space to communicate with their family and friends, and so to encourage women to check in on each other privately, has partnered with actor Anushka Sharma to launch a series of mirrored messages appearing in private spaces – women’s restrooms – in malls across Delhi.
A message will appear on the restroom mirror when triggered by motion, alongside a QR code that offers suggestions for checking in via a private WhatsApp message. Afterwards, the message vanishes without a trace, just like a Disappearing Message on WhatsApp.
Commenting on the launch of the campaign, actor, Anushka Sharma, said, “Women don’t always feel safe to speak up about issues they’re facing, however they tend to open up with a friend who reaches out to them, privately. I’ve partnered with WhatsApp to drive awareness around the importance of having a secure space for women to confide in others and how a private conversation can be empowering for women to speak up and seek help when their safety and well-being might be at risk. I truly feel it is important to check in on a friend, colleague, loved one, especially if you haven’t heard from them in a while and that one private message can be a lifeline. I am happy to be a part of this campaign that can be a safe space for women to open up.”
Sandhya Devanathan, Vice President of Meta India, said, “At WhatsApp, we believe protecting users’ personal conversations with their family and friends is the most important type of privacy we can give them. We’re thrilled to add two new privacy-first features that further strengthen and add to WhatsApp’s built-in layers of protection to offer users a safe space to have their most private conversations. Through the series of mirrored messages, we’re spreading the word on the importance of checking in on a friend or a loved one, encouraging women to reach out and support each other to speak up. We hope it helps start important conversations on WhatsApp, which always start with a single private message.”
To coincide with the launch, Mark Zuckerberg has announced a new privacy feature, Silence Unknown Callers, which helps to screen out spam, scams and calls from unknown people for greater control over your calls. We’re also rolling out Privacy Checkup, a step-by-step feature that guides you through the important privacy settings on WhatsApp and helps you choose the right level of protection, all in one place.
Details on the YouGov Research Results from a YouGov survey of 6,000 people across UK, India, Brazil and US. Issues include at least one of the following: mental health, domestic abuse, workplace harassment, harassment at college/university or sexual harassment.