MAD coalition appeals to TikTok, Google, Youtube to help counter election-related fake news  

A COALITION of civil society groups and other sectors has appealed to three social media platforms to set up systems that will help counter the spread of fake news online, particularly those relating to the Philippines’ 2022 elections.   

The Movement Against Misinformation (MAD) sent open letters to TikTok, Google and Youtube to advocate for transparency, accountability, and increase resources to counter false information connected to the national and local polls in May.   

In the letter to TikTok, MAD requested the short video streaming platform to have an in-app guide to the 2022 elections in the country, work with reliable and independent fact-checking groups, and publish their standards for flagging content as electoral misinformation.   

In a separate letter to Google and YouTube, the group urged the online platforms to tap content moderators and fact-checkers who are fluent in Filipino to stop people who spread fake news.   

They also asked the social media firms to reveal their criteria for marking content as wrong election information and inform users about political or issue-based content.   

MAD Chairman Antonio La Viña, in an online conference on Wednesday, said they intend to put pressure on these platforms to take down malicious content as soon as possible.  

“We will not rule out legal action, but we will be in a cooperative mode with the social media platforms to get them to implement and execute their policies,” Mr. La Viña said.   

Philippine Bar Association President Rico V. Domingo noted that people are inclined to go to court since there are platforms that do not comply with their legal commitment.  

“What we would like to do right now, when we chronicle the responses of the major platforms, is to have a forceful and assertive monitoring of their responses,” the lawyer said.  

MAD previously wrote an open letter about countering fake news during the past elections to Facebook, now rebranded as Meta.   

Meta replied acknowledging their role in the electoral process and listed initiatives taken, including coordinating with the Commission on Elections. — Jaspearl Emerald G. Tan