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TikTok is on the precipice of a huge disinformation scandal that's going unchecked

3 221 16
21.03.2022

Since Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine last month, Kremlin-backed media have also organized a massive disinformation campaign — especially over TikTok.

In one late-February video, posted on the personal account of the editor-in-chief of the state-backed media organization RT, a TV host rants about how the invasion of Ukraine is "unfortunately necessary" to supress "bloody Nazis," parroting blatant Kremlin propaganda. The video received 4.3 million views and counting. In another video, viewed over 1.1 million times, state-backed Sputnik news falsely claimed that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had abandoned his people and fled the capital Kyiv. In yet another, this one with over 2 million views, RIA Novosti, another state-backed news agency active on the platform, posted a clip of former US President Donald Trump referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin as "smart," bringing the well-worn Kremlin tactic of highlighting sympathetic Western voices to a new frontier on TikTok.

The editor-in-chief of RT, a state media organ, has over 225,000 followers. I counted at least seven other accounts linked to the Russian state whose followers total over 700,000.

This content is staggering popular. Russian influencers on the platform have even been paid to spread Kremlin propaganda.

But while it is clear that TikTok is a crucial part of the........

© Business Insider


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