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5 ideas for a more transparent experience in WhatsApp

As a Brazilian, I use Whatsapp as the only channel of communication with friends and family. Not because I live in NYC, but because most people in only use WhatApp. During Brazilian elections last year, many untrusted content was shared and little was the source to verify them. Based on “Whatsapp Research Awards for Social Science and Misinformation” initial areas and other research, I explored ideas for a more transparent design.

“GREAT! So much better than previous format. This will be good!" - Cardmember in Australia

“I love it!! I think it is very intuitive and a lot of thought has gone into providing an outstanding user experience.” - Cardmember in the UK

“The most important information is readily available” - Cardmember in the USA

“Aw, c’mon! It looks fantastic, you are all geniuses." - Cardmember in the USA

“Easy to use, simple but concise

layout” - Cardmember in the UK

“Cleaner, more
obvious and clearer!” - Cardmember in the UK

“It’s more user-friendly than the previous one.” - Cardmember in Mexico

4 Personas

Problems

3. Navigation difficulties and design clutter
2. Discoverability issues with transactions table
1. Balance summary confusion - 
"What is my required amount to pay?

Solution

A layout that highlights the 3 top payment and balance items, followed by the transactions table and a right rail with offers. 

Whatsapp research

It’s very positive to see Whatsapp promoting an external research for miscommunication and recognizing the importance of improving its transparency and ethics. For now, only areas of the research are open to the public. Based on that, I was able to identify potential user problems and what could be Whatsapp’s focus of improvement. Below are the five topics:

  1. Information Processing of Problematic Content

  2. Digital literacy and misinformation

  3. Election related misinformation

  4. Network effects and virality

  5. Detection of problematic behavior within encrypted systems