If there is something we are battling now aside from the pandemic, it’s the prevalent spread of misinformation on different social media platforms. But what are these social media giants doing to help in preventing the spread of fake news?
In an exclusive interview with TikTok Philippines Head of Policy Mr. Kristoffer Rada, they shared that they do not tolerate misinformation on the platform.
“At TikTok, we do not tolerate any kind of misinformation on our platform that may cause harm to individuals, our community, or the larger public. This is part of our Community Guidelines which also includes misleading posts about elections or other civic processes. If the content uploaded is confirmed to be false, we automatically remove it from our platform”, Mr. Rada shared.
If there is any content inconclusive, users will see a banner informing the creator that the content has been reviewed but cannot be conclusively validated. The video will then be flagged as unsubstantiated content, and the video creator will be notified. If anyone attempts to share the flagged video, they’ll see a prompt reminding them that the video has been flagged as unverified content.
“Also, as part of our trust and safety initiatives, we have been actively taking down misinformation videos on the platform. We have made video reporting in the app more accessible and easier for users”, Mr. Rada added.
TikTok worldwide partnered with Agence France-Presse (AFP), a leading global news agency providing fast, comprehensive, and verified coverage of the events happening all around the world. With information from 151 countries, AFP is a world leader in digital verification. They over 2,400 staff representing 100 different nationalities, AFP covers the world in six languages, with a unique quality of multimedia storytelling spanning video, text, photos, and graphics. With AFP’s help in assessing the accuracy of content, TikTok is able to remove videos that promote any form of misinformation.
Since its election season, TikTok has been working double-time to help promote fair and honest elections. This includes making sure that election information is accurate in the app.
“During this election season, we commit to safeguarding everyone from harmful misinformation. However TikTok is a space for entertainment, we do not see ourselves as a space or an avenue for discussing political issues. We strongly encourage our community members to use the tools we provide on TikTok to report any content or account they believe violates any of our Community Guidelines. Reports are being reviewed and necessary actions are done with urgency”, Mr. Rada said.
TikTok has partnered with the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) since 2021 to implement important initiatives for the upcoming elections.
They launched #RightInformationThisElectionto help Filipinos get access to election information. This initiative will help users be well informed especially as the National Elections are drawing near. Another effort is the app’s Election Information page where users can see official and accurate election-related information. This also helps to continuously combat misinformation and fake news online.
TikTok also partnered with GMA News for the elections for coverage of the 2022 elections along with 50 other partners that vary from different industries like telecommunications, media, education, business, law, and public service.
“All of which have pledged their support to keep a close watch on the electoral process, and help voters make informed decisions on Election Day”, said the TikTok representative.
“#eLeksyonSerye campaign kicked off last March 1. The campaign will feature a series of informative content leading up to the elections, including an interactive Online E-Leksyon Quiz that helps people determine how well they know their voter rights and responsibilities, and the country’s political system. The E-Leksyon Quiz will also feature pillars and senior reporters from the GMA News and Public Affairs team, who will pose multiple-choice questions to their followers on TikTok. Viewers will have 3 seconds to answer each question, and their final score at the end of the quiz will show users whether or not they are #eLeksyonSerye”, they shared.
Though there is much political content in the app during election season, TikTok reiterates that the app has a “No Political Ads Policy”.
“Our commitment to our community is to stay true and provide them with a genuine app experience. In light of this, we have chosen not to allow political ads on TikTok. We make sure that any paid ads are in line with our standards, and we believe that political ads do not fit the TikTok platform experience. To that end, we will not allow paid ads that promote or oppose a candidate, current leader, political party or group, or issue at the federal, state, or local level – including election-related ads, advocacy ads, or issue ads” TikTok shared.