Tiktok says to intensify fight vs fake news as platform grows

Jekki Pascual, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 02 2022 06:34 PM

MANILA - Amid allegations of being a platform for disinformation, particularly during the recent elections, video-sharing app TikTok said it is working hard to fight fake news.

Speaking to ABS-CBN, Toff Rada, Tiktok Head of Public Policy for the Philippines and Malaysia said they actively remove posts that violate company guidelines such as showing fake information, bullying, racism as well as other forms of discrimination.

He said as of the last quarter of 2021, they had deleted 94 percent of violative videos before the posts were even reported. 

"We take fake news very seriously. As a matter of fact, we do have this dedicated team called 'Trust and Safety' that sweeps that platform and takes down various forms of disinformation," said Rada.

Tiktok has hired many Filipinos, including those who can speak other Philippine languages such as Cebuano or Bisaya to help in monitoring the posts. The company has also partnered with fact-checking groups and media organizations to help in verifying some of the posts.

Rada denied that Tiktok played a big role in disinformation during the recent elections, saying they immediately remove violative posts. He added however that there may be Tiktok posts that were also uploaded to other social media sites like Facebook. he said they have no control over these posts.

To further beef up their fight against fake news, Rada said they will launch the 'Digital Literacy Hub' in the Philippines. 

TikTok will partner with the academe, government and content creators to help educate the public in terms of what to post and share online.

The company will also ask popular content creators to share videos on how to spot fake news and stop spreading disinformation. 

Rada said he hopes they would be able "help build critical thinking skills for Filipinos so that at an individual level we are better equipped to identify and determine what kind of content is fake news."

"The problem of fake news is a shared problem that requires a shared responsibility if we are to get to a real solution," he added.

Tiktok has about 240 million active users in Southeast Asia. There is no data yet available for the Philippines, but the country remains a growing market for the company.

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