The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has stepped up its efforts to stop the spread of false information on social media. According to papers made accessible, social media companies blacklisted 6,418 URLs implicated in propagating fake news at the PTA’s request.
A total of 15,444 URLs used to distribute false information were sent by the regulator to social media sites, 6,418 of which have been blocked.
1,315 URLs have been blocked by social media networks yet 7,717 URLs remain accessible.
In accordance with the document, PTA processed 107 URLs for blockage on Dailymotion, of which 104 URLs were blocked.
Only one URL has been rejected by Dailymotion; the other two are still clickable.
PTA ordered Facebook to block 3,214 URLs, of which 2105 URLs involved in distributing false information have already been blocked.
Only 425 URLs have been rejected by Facebook, while 684 links or URLs are still available.
Similarly to this, Instagram has received 140 URLs from the telecom authority for filtering, 113 of which have already been blocked.
Only 8 URLs have been rejected by Instagram, while 19 links or URLs are still clickable.
46 out of 50 links used to distribute false information have been blocked by Tiktok, but 4 URLs given by PTA are still viewable.
The paper states that out of the 8,413 links PTA reported to Twitter for blocking, 2,227 links were indeed blocked.
Twitter rejected the request to block 545 links, while 5641 URLs are still open.
Out of the 857 links given by PTA, YouTube has blacklisted 422 URLs. YouTube rejected the request to block 311 URLs, however, 124 links are still clickable.
The document demonstrates that PTA contacted the appropriate social media sites in accordance with Section 22 of the PECA Act 2016 to take action against social media accounts and URLs propagating false information.
PTA has requested these platforms in response to concerns it has received from the general public and institutions.
Following PTA’s request, social media sites began to block the accounts it had identified as being involved in the dissemination of fake news.
PTA states that the complainant should raise a complaint against social media platforms directly if they refuse to block any content at the regulator’s request.
To stop the dissemination of false information via bogus accounts, PTA has instructed social media platforms to tighten the verification requirements for new account registration.
To read our blog on “Over 500 new websites are created by PITB for govt. agencies,” click here.