Israel – Hamas conflict: How to restrict horrific photos, videos on your social media apps

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THE internet recently has been flooded with gory images and videos of the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in the Middle East.

These images have shown dead bodies, the reported murder of civilians and hostages, and other human rights abuses allegedly committed by both parties. While some of these visuals are real, some of them are also misleading or outright false.

READ : Video showing a child allegedly being shot is from a movie, not Israel-Hamas war

Meta had on Friday, October 13, 2023, announced that it was taking steps to remove Hamas-related disinformation from its platforms.

The posts may infringe the rights to dignity, privacy, and human life of those depicted in the photographs and videos, whether they are false or not. Additionally, some of the graphic photographs appear to violate social media platforms’ rules, which normally forbid graphic violence when it is used for propaganda or depicts mutilated bodies, depending on the situation.

However, if you use social media, you probably won’t be able to completely avoid seeing these gory images in your feeds.

Follow the steps below to modify the settings in the following social media apps so that videos only play when you want it to. Some apps also let you set restrictions or add warnings to graphic images that you might not wish to view.

 

WhatsApp

You can disable new message alerts for a WhatsApp group, which prevents you from being informed of them. If you’d like, you may restart receiving notifications later. Here are instructions from WhatsApp on how to go about it.

If you think there is inappropriate violence or falsified information in the group chat, you can also block users or report the content to WhatsApp. Guidelines on these are available here. A WhatsApp group can also be deleted. Only the group chat’s admins will be notified if you do this.

 

X (formerly Twitter)

It is easier to change the settings from the site via: Twitter.com. You can do that by selecting Pick “More” (the representation of a circle with three horizontal dots in the center) from the menu on the left side of the screen. Select settings and support, then settings and privacy, then privacy and safety then content you see.

Disable the checkbox labeled “Display media that may contain sensitive content.”

Sensitive images and videos will display a warning and give you the option to click to view them. Click here to read more instructions published by X.

You can also disable automatic video playback while scrolling. Again, select the picture of the circle with the three horizontal dots in the center from Twitter.com.

Click on settings and support, then settings and privacy , then click on accessibility, display and languages , it would lead you to  Data usage  and lastly ‘Autoplay.’ Click on “Never” to stop videos from playing automatically as you scroll.

 

YouTube

To change the settings on the YouTube website,  click at the bottom of a video while it is playing. A pause image and an auto play button are visible in the center. To automatically stop playing each video one at a time, click that. Here are further instructions from YouTube regarding that.

In some circumstances, YouTube may apply a warning to videos before they begin playing, the company says.

To change the settings on the app, Click on your profile in the upper right corner. click on settings, and then autoplay. Tap off to stop one video from automatically playing when you finish another.

Another way is to then click on general and then on restricted mode. Tap on to hide videos on that particular device that YouTube considers “potentially mature.”

 

Facebook

To access the menu in the iPhone app, tap the three horizontal lines in the bottom right corner of the screen. Alternately, on the main screen of the Android app, tap the three horizontal lines in the upper right corner.

Select the gear-shaped symbol in the top right corner of the next screen. Then, choose the ‘Never Autoplay Videos’ option under preferences and then media.

 

Instagram

In the lower right-hand corner of your screen, tap on the three horizontal lines starting in the upper right corner. Select sensitive content under settings and privacy suggested content.

If “Less” is selected, Instagram will display fewer posts that it believes may be sensitive. You might still view graphic images from accounts you follow if you change this setting.

 

TikTok

The ‘For You’ page’s “Restricted Mode” helps prevent access to explicit videos. Additionally, you can receive a warning regarding “Sensitive content” and have the option to view or skip the TikTok video by clicking on it. In the lower right corner, tap your profile to access it. You may then click the three horizontal lines in the upper right corner.

Select Restricted Mode under Settings and privacy, and click on ‘digital wellbeing.’ To activate or deactivate Restricted Mode, you must set a passcode.

Fact-checker at The FactheckHub | [email protected] | + posts

Seasoned fact-checker and researcher Fatimah Quadri has written numerous fact-checks, explainers, and media literacy pieces for The FactCheckHub in an effort to combat information disorder. She can be reached at sunmibola_q on X or [email protected].

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