WHO joins TikTok to fight against misinformation regarding coronavirus

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on February 29, 2020

The World Health Organization joined popular short-video platform TikTok on Saturday to provide reliable information regarding the coronavirus outbreak and counter misinformation spread through social media platforms.

“We just kicked off our first @tiktok_uk/@tiktok_us post! Follow us for more tips on how to protect yourself from #coronavirus,” WHO tweeted from its official account.

In WHO’s first video, technical lead of infection prevention and control, Benedetta Allegranzi detailed measures for prevention against the spread of the virus. Allegranzi shared tips on how individuals can protect themselves against the spread of the virus through personal healthcare tips.

“We are joining @tiktok to provide you with reliable and timely public health advice! Our first post: How to protect yourself from #coronavirus ?” WHO captioned its first video on TikTok.

The short-video platform has been flooding with fake information with many teenagers pretending to be infected with the virus according to media reports. In a recent incident, a Vancouver student in his post on the platform claimed that his friend was the first person to catch the virus in Canada. In an interview with the Daily Beast, a British Columbia Department of Health spokesperson confirmed that the video was fake.

Social media platforms have been flooding with hoaxes and fake information regarding the spread of the virus and control measures for the same.

WHO and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have partnered up with platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tencent, and TikTok to fight misinformation regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. Twitter, for instance, uses a message that says “Know the Facts” for news related to the virus with links to the CDC’s website.

TikTok also links users who search for content related to the coronavirus to the WHO website.

TikTok is one of the most popular apps across the globe. The platform had clocked over 60 million installs in September 2019, becoming the most downloaded social media app worldwide according to previous reports.

Published on February 29, 2020

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