Russia – Ukraine Crisis

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has caused global angst, putting the military superpowers of the world at odds formerly again, and potentially forcing an intervention that could lead to one of the biggest conflicts in decades. And unlike analogous incidents in times once, this battle is playing out in the age of social media, with memes, misinformation juggernauts, and swindles all adding to the growing whirlpool of information, which can confuse, deform and cloud what’s passing in the eastern European region. 

After Russia’s invasion of Ukraine officially began, social media was flooded with photos of bombed-out buildings, first-person accounts from Ukrainian civilians fleeing their homes, and even videos purporting to be from soldiers engaged in the fighting.

Given this, and the part that social media now plays in the dispersion of information, the platforms need to work presto to limit any abuse of their networks for questionable purposes, and numerous have formerly legislated plans to alleviate certain rudiments of abuse and misinformation.

How Social Media Platforms are responding to the crisis between Ukraine and Russia

Here it’s how Social media Platforms are responding to the crisis between Ukraine and Russia.

Meta

Facebook is at the main center of the social media information shared within the conflict zone, with around 70 million users in Russia, and 24 million in Ukraine by Nov 2021 which is approximately half of the total population of each respective nation.

Late last week, the Russian Government announced that they would restrict access to Facebook due to Meta’s refusal to remove misinformation warning labels on posts from state-affiliated Facebook pages. Now, Meta has taken that action and also prohibited ads from Russian state media FB pages, and demonetized these accounts, severely limiting the capacity for Russian authorities to use Facebook as an information vector.

Russia also has its own social media and messaging platforms such as VK, OK, Viber, Telegram, and other apps. So they easily communicate and post their activities to motivate Russian citizens. But Meta has taken a strong stance, while it’s also restricted access to many accounts within Ukraine, including those belonging to Russian state media organizations.

In addition to this, Meta has also opened a special operations center, staffed by native Russian and Ukrainian speakers, to monitor for harmful content trends. If users share war-related images and videos, it adds new warning labels to their posts. 

Also, Read – How To Signup VK Account

Also, Read – How to Signup Ok.ru Account

Meta’s also outlined a range of safety features for users in Ukraine, “including the ability for people to lock their Facebook profile, removing the ability to view and search friends lists, and additional tools on Messenger”. Meta works hard to find the misinformation posts from spammers and scammers seeking to capitalize on the situation for engagement.

YouTube

At the request of the Ukrainian Government, Google-owned second largest search engine and top video platform YouTube has announced that it’s restricting access to Russian television networks and youtube channels for users in Ukraine and also suspending monetization feature for a few Russian channels. It also removed Russian state-owned YouTube channels from recommendations and limited the reach of their uploads across the platform.

Russia YouTube Channels Blocked in Ukraine

As per YouTube (via The Wall Street Journal): 

“As always, our teams are continuing to monitor closely for news developments, including evaluating what any new sanctions and export controls may mean for YouTube.”

Twitter

Twitter also announced a temporary ban on all ads in Ukraine and Russia “to ensure critical public safety information is elevated and ads don’t detract from it”. Twitter banned political ads back in 2019, including those from state-affiliated accounts.

The #Kiev hashtag (at 2.5 million posts) was dominant on microblogging platform Twitter, while #STOPWAR (2,52,000), #Ukraine Russia (255,000), #Ukraine under attack (65,600), #Russia Ukraine War (27,800), #Russian invasion (68,700), #Poland (296,000), #Russians (608,000) and #America (774,000) were the other main trending ones on the platform a few days back during russia-ukraine war. 

Ukraine’s official Twitter account wants @Russia to be removed from the platform.

In addition, Twitter’s safety and integrity teams were monitoring the tweets and potential risks associated with the conflict to protect its services, including identifying and disrupting attempts to amplify false and misleading information, said a spokesperson. 

TikTok

Tiktok, the popular video creation app used by more than 1 billion people has been amplifying videos portraying old conflicts, scenes from movies, and even video game battles as if showing on-the-ground live footage.

The short video sharing platform TikTok reports that Russian-affiliated groups are using the app to spread ‘orchestrated disinformation’, while thousands of related videos are being uploaded to the platform, many fake, causing significant headaches for TikTok’s moderation teams. 

As of Friday (Feb-25-2022) evening, videos with the hashtag #RussianInvasion have received 32 million views and videos with the hashtag #RussiaUkraine have racked up 132 million views.

TikTok’s algorithm designed something of a paradox: If you watch a video repeatedly to try to understand whether it’s authentic or return to one after conducting research, “you’re telling the algorithm you want more of this,” Gregory said.

Also, Read – How To Go Live Stream on TikTok

The introduction of monetization option TikTok influencers for popular clips has also added new motivation for bad actors to create fake streams and broadcasts in the app, in a bid to lure viewers, while on the other side, reports have also suggested that Ukrainian TikTok users are using the app to communicate Russian troop locations to Ukrainian fighters.

Let’s hope this war stops soon between Ukraine and Russia and Peace Spreads Everywhere!

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