WhatsApp has pushed out a new update to its mobile apps which brings a feature to group chats that at first blush may not be a huge improvement but in the right setting it could be a big, big change.

As of the new update which rolled out this past weekend, group chat owners can specify users who are able to post messages, making everyone else a recipient only.

This new change means that it will be easier to ensure that important messages are not lost in a tidal wave of other messages as can often be the case in busy group chats. WhatsApp quite rightly points out that this new change is aimed at group chats which often receive important announcements.

We can imagine this being vital when used by schools or community initiatives which need a way to have everyone in one place and then be able to send them targeted messages. This way, the recipients are unable to reply, preventing messages from being lost in the fray.

WhatsApp said back in May that it was working to improve group messaging, including improved admin controls.

Groups have been an important part of the WhatsApp experience, whether it’s family members connecting across the globe or childhood friends staying in touch over the years. There are also people coming together in groups on WhatsApp like new parents looking for support, students organizing study sessions, and even city leaders coordinating relief efforts after natural disasters.

In order to enable the new setting in WhatsApp, users need to tap Group Settings > Send Messages and select Only Admins.

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