China's new ‘denying a rumor’ platform identifies fake news

The rumor-busting platform tells the public what the government deems fake news.

Zoey Chong Reporter
Zoey is CNET's Asia News Reporter based in Singapore. She prefers variety to monotony and owns an Android mobile device, a Windows PC and Apple's MacBook Pro all at the same time. Outside of the office, she can be found binging on Korean variety shows, if not chilling out with a book at a café recommended by a friend.
Zoey Chong
2 min read
Nick Golebiewski

China is stepping up its fight against disinformation spreading online.

Piyao, a platform hosted by the country's Central Cyberspace Affairs Commission and state-run media Xinhua, was launched Wednesday to bust rumors and fake news disseminated across the internet.

The move comes as official data showed a whopping 6.7 million reports of fake news in July. News broadcasted on Piyao will come from various channels including state-owned and party-controlled media and government agencies, according to Reuters. It will also employ artificial intelligence to identify disinformation.


China will use Piyao to help fight false information disseminated online.

Screengrab by Zoey Chong/CNET

Not only can internet users report bogus stories, they can also find out if something online is authentic or not based on the resources provided on the Piyao platform. The website also publishes announcements from the government and authorities, expert opinion, advice on how to identify disinformation as well as legislation, among other things.

In addition to a website, Piyao (which translates to "denying a rumor") is also available as a mobile app and has social media accounts on Weibo and WeChat. Responses on Weibo to the Piyao platform have been positive, with many commenters expressing support and some saying this should have been done long ago.

Piyao isn't the first platform in China aimed at fighting fake news. Weibo set up an official account that identifies and lets its users report disinformation. In 2015, Xinhua also worked with relevant authorities such as the Ministry of Agriculture to establish an association that checks food-related rumors.

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