WhatsApp’s new terms and conditions are in effect. Are you now losing access to the app? These are the answers to the most burning questions.
It has been clear since January 2021: WhatsApp’s terms and conditions are changing. How this will look like and when it will happen has changed drastically in the months since then: First it was said that the terms and conditions would be adjusted for February 8th. But after many users felt they were under pressure from this short period, Whatsapp postponed the date to May 15. That happened now. But what does the new terms and conditions actually contain?
Specifically, nothing will change for private users for the time being. Conversations between friends or in family chat remain as private and encrypted as they were before the change. Only chats with business accounts are actually affected. But here, too, a distinction must be made between two different accounts: There is the normal business account and the special business account with a cloud provider.
So why all the fuss?
As Wabetainfo.com explains, a conversation with a normal business account can be compared to a chat with friends. However, anyone who writes with a business account with a cloud provider will in future be subject to the new terms and conditions. According to these, details from conversations with such special business accounts can now be used for targeted advertising on Facebook – WhatsApp’s parent company. So if you are concerned about your privacy, you can simply avoid contact with such accounts.
Until recently, WhatsApp had communicated that users who had not accepted the terms and conditions by May 15, would lose access to most of the functions of their accounts. This caused a stir among many users who were unsure about the new terms and conditions. Now WhatsApp has crawled back again and has also reversed this announcement. As techbook.de writes, users get a few weeks longer deadline if the new terms and conditions are not accepted.
Permanent text is displayed
It only becomes problematic when the “persistent reminder” pops up in the chat app. From then on, many functions can actually no longer be used as usual. You can still accept calls and video calls, but you can no longer access the chat list. “After we have given everyone enough time to deal with the changes in peace, we remind those who have not yet done it to read and accept them. After a few weeks, this reminder will be displayed permanently,” said above WhatsApp opposite “inside digital”.
Only when a notification for a new message appears, you can still reply to it directly. If you wait a few more weeks, WhatsApp also switches off the video and audio calls function. Notifications will also no longer be displayed. This means that the chat service is then no longer usable because you can no longer answer incoming messages or calls.
What can you do?
It remains unclear what happens to an account that does not accept the terms and conditions even after this second phase. It can only be said that users can continue to agree to the new terms and conditions even after May 15th. However, if the user remains inactive, the affected account will be deleted after 120 days according to WhatsApp’s deletion policy. So if you can’t get used to the new terms and conditions, it is advisable to quickly create a backup of all chat histories and files from WhatsApp.
You can then, for example, imitate numerous readers and switch to other chat apps such as Telegram, Signal or Threema. But if you want to stay on WhatsApp, but still don’t want to share your data with Facebook, you can safely accept the terms and conditions. You should just stay away from business accounts with cloud providers. Communication with companies is clearly marked and always voluntary.