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TikTok launches new campaign to curb spread of Covid-19 misinformation

TikTok’s new campaign will be live on DD and other television channels and social media handles starting today.

TikTok is running a new campaign which it hopes will help stop the spread of misinformation around Covid-19.
TikTok is running a new campaign which it hopes will help stop the spread of misinformation around Covid-19. (AFP)

Short video platform TikTok on Monday said it is launching a new campaign, urging users to be extremely careful with the content they create and share online to ensure that they do not spread misinformation amid Covid-19 pandemic.

TikTok - which has about 200 million users in India - said the campaign has been directed by Anurag Basu and features popular personalities, including Virat Kohli, Sara Ali Khan, Ayushmann Khurrana and Kriti Sanon.

"Fake news is harmful, makes us ill-informed, erodes trust and impacts communities. TikTok has launched its Public Service Announcement (PSA) titled #MatKarForward to help raise awareness among the digital community around creation and sharing of misinformation," the video platform said in a statement.

The campaign will be live on DD and other television channels and social media handles starting Monday, it added.

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The government had asked social media companies to place more checks in order to curb the spread of misleading content that could cause harm to the society in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. It had also asked these platforms to remove rogue messages spreading misinformation and weakening the government's efforts to fight against the coronavirus.

TikTok's goal is to develop policies and community tools that make it a safer platform for users, the statement said.

Most recently, the platform had introduced a 'Misleading Information' category, along with a COVID-19 sub-category, within the in-app reporting feature to curb the misinformation amid COVID-19 pandemic.

"Spread of misinformation is an industry-wide concern and a shared responsibility. As a leading short-format video platform where users enjoy the freedom of creative expression, we continue to take proactive steps to prioritize the safety and well-being of our communities," TikTok India Head Nikhil Gandhi said.

The campaign was shot by the cast and edited by the director at their respective homes, following the government's social distancing guidelines and COVID-19 norms, the statement said.