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Video Credit: Jillian Banner

Bill McCarthy
By Bill McCarthy March 25, 2022
Aaron Sharockman
By Aaron Sharockman March 25, 2022

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has fueled a surge of false and misleading content on TikTok. Countless videos are exploiting the platform’s defining features around audio creation and sharing in order to spread fake wartime footage purportedly filmed in Ukraine. 

This flood of misinformation features much of the same types of deceptive postings that have plagued older social networking sites for years, including waves of old, out-of-context photos and videos falsely claiming to represent scenes from Ukraine. 

These have spread even as the community guidelines on TikTok, which has more than 1 billion users, say that the platform does "not permit misinformation that causes harm to individuals, our community, or the larger public regardless of intent."

One video purported to show Russian soldiers parachuting into Ukraine but was actually several years old. Another clip claimed to show Russian and Ukrainian troops "face to face," but it dated back to 2014. And an ultra-viral video, which supposedly depicted Ukrainian soldiers saying goodbye to sobbing loved ones, was cut from a 2017 documentary film.

But TikTok has also played host to newer forms of misinformation not as common elsewhere, courtesy of a unique feature that helped fuel its rise in popularity: its audio functionality, which lets creators take the music or sounds off of other videos and pair them with their own visuals. 

Read the full story here.

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