Saturday February 24, 2024

TikTok to work on tackling misinformation for Feb 8 election

TikTok to collaborate with Agence France-Presse as its fact-checker to address Pakistani electoral context

By Web Desk
February 05, 2024
A representational image of a persons holding a smartphone with TikTok seen launched on its screen. — AFP/File
A representational image of a person's holding a smartphone with TikTok seen launched on its screen. — AFP/File

As Pakistan is set to witness its history's 10th general elections this week on February 8, TikTok — the popular short-form video hosting platform — has shared its detailed plan to counter misinformation and ensure electoral integrity on its application.

The Chinese social media company said it is dedicated to fostering a safe, authentic, and reliable information environment during the crucial period in Pakistan's political landscape on a day when voters use their power to choose the country's next leadership.

In a statement released on Monday, TikTok Pakistan said: "As the Pakistan General Election nears, TikTok is dedicated to ensuring that its platform remains a source of joy and creativity, while also being an authentic source of reliable and factual information."

The platform continues to support its community in Pakistan and globally, fostering a digital environment where authentic content thrives and misinformation is diligently combated.

Building on its robust global framework to combat misinformation, TikTok is collaborating with the internationally recognised fact-checking organisation Agence France-Presse (AFP) as its fact-checker to address the Pakistani electoral context specifically.

Additionally, it is also working closely with local community partner organisations in Pakistan to ensure the platform's integrity. These partnerships enable TikTok to identify potential misinformation, take action on it, and share accurate information with its community around important events.

The video-sharing platform's fact-checking partners do not moderate content on the platform, but their assessments provide valuable input which helps TikTok take the appropriate action that upholds its Community Guidelines.

The China-owned video application's strategy includes innovative product features to enhance user awareness and participation in maintaining platform integrity.

"TikTok has launched the Pakistan Election Center on the platform, which is a dedicated hub, available both in English and Urdu, that will direct users to authoritative information on the election, including voting procedures and locations," a statement by the platform read.

It added that its easy-to-use reporting tools will empower users to easily identify and report potentially misleading content. "This user-centric approach fosters a vigilant and responsible community, crucial during the election period."

The statement added that the platform is committed to raising awareness among its users, by providing educational content and in-app guides.

"These initiatives are designed to equip the community with the necessary skills to discern credible information, thereby reinforcing informed participation in the electoral process," it added.

Enforcement of TikTok's Community Guidelines, available both in English and Urdu, is a key component of its misinformation combat strategy, the statement mentioned.

"The platform employs a multi-pronged approach, including the removal of guideline-violating content, redirecting search results to authoritative sources, and reducing the discoverability of unverified information.

"This comprehensive approach ensures that the platform remains a safe space, free from harmful election-related misinformation."

In its statement, TikTok stated that transparency and collaboration are at the core of its efforts. "By working closely with experts, safety advisory councils, and civil society organisations, TikTok enhances its policy framework and ensures the elevation of reliable information sources within the app."

This collaborative ethos underscores TikTok's commitment to being a responsible social media platform, it added.