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TikTok’s new policy is adding labels to certain state-owned content

Recently, the popular short-video making app, TikTok disclosed that it will be implementing its new state social media policy, according to which they’ll start placing warning labels on ‘certain’ state-owned media channels posts. As per the recent post on the company’s website, in response to the current Russian invasion of Ukraine, they have accelerated their plans to test out the policy. The Chinese company, TikTok initiated to work on the feature of placing labels on the state-owned posts, back in 2020 but given the devastating war in Ukraine, which has been hurtful to a lot of people including people of the TikTok community, they have stimulated their efforts to launch the policy as early as possible, keeping their users safety as the top most priority.

The app has also dictated certain resources and enforced other proactive measures as well, such as combating misinformation and supporting digital literacy among the TikTok community.The post further states that TikTok users will be able to see the warning tags on the bottom of the video, that the video they are watching was posted by an outlet that is under state’s control, anytime soon in the upcoming days.

One of TikTok representatives confirmed that all the TikTok accounts controlled by the Russian state will be the first ones to be labeled, however, they didn’t specify any particular Russian account. The labels are to be applicable on every Russian-owned social media post and visible to each TikTok user across the globe. Moreover, it was confirmed by The Verge that this one television network controlled by the Russian state, RT, is having its TikTok account approved.

Considering the rising Russian-Ukrainian conflict many other social media platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook had taken strict actions against the Russian-owned media posts beforehand and had these labels applied on their state-controlled contents for a while now, with YouTube being the first one to apply them by the end of 2018, followed by Twitter, and then Facebook in 2020.

Because of the war between Russia and Ukraine, the media content from the Russian social media platforms such as RT and Sputnik was disapproved by many users. These outlets were blocked by Reddit while Facebook and YouTube forbid their social media content to be available in Europe and as reported by the Wall Street Journal, TikTok did the same.

In response to this, the government of Russia declared that they will ban Facebook in their state alleging ‘discrimination against Russian media and information sources’. Furthermore, the communications agency of Russia contacted TikTok and sought answers to why some of their state news stories were taken down.


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