By Prateek Waghre and Rohan Seth
This Discussion Document analyses the responses of digital platforms to the information disorders around COVID-19:
- During the pandemic, digital platforms may be able to exercise greater discretion in content moderation from increased calls for them to act as arbiters of truth.
- Efforts to contain information disorders vary across the following areas:
- Changes in Information Flows: Platforms have made alterations to how information is spread.
- Funding: Platforms have invested significant sums of money into fact checking organisations, journalists, and media outlets.
- Changes in User Interface (UI): Platforms have made changes to their UIs to highlight credible information from public health authorities.
- Policy: Platforms have reacted by coming up with new policies, modifying existing policies, and deploying existing policies to deal with COVID-related information disorders.
- Level and consistency of actions taken differ across geographies and types of actors.
- Platforms’ response in controlling misinformation may lead to significant changes in the relationships between the government, society, and people.