How China’s biggest social network fights fake news

Xinmei Shen:

Here’s how the mini program works: The front page shows a feed of articles that have been debunked recently, with a search box at the top where you can search for terms and see if there are any debunked articles related to it.

The second section (“Related to Me”) compiles all the fake news articles that you have either read or shared. The last section shows the number of articles debunked and who the fact checkers are.

WeChat says that it already has more than 800 third-party fact checkers, including 289 institutions in the China Food and Drug Administration system, 5 state-level media and 32 local “cyber affair” offices. Other organizations can also apply to join the fact checkers, provided that they send relevant qualification documents to Tencent and already have a verified public WeChat account.

The mini program will also send you a notification on WeChat if an article you’ve read has been debunked. It claims to have 19.7 million users as of the end of 2017, and that it has debunked more than a million articles so far — and punished around 180,000 public accounts.