Tick Tock, TikTok: With only 80 days until the 2022 midterms, all eyes are on the misinformation already spreading on social media platforms. And with the clock running down, TikTok is racing to keep up.
This week, the rapidly growing platform went public with the steps it’s taking to moderate election-related content. Those include: Continued partnerships with fact-checking orgs to help flag inaccurate information. A crackdown on paid political content posted by influencers, which the company says has been a “challenge.” And an in-app election center with “authoritative information” on polling places and results.
That’s good, right?
It’s a start. But many wonder if it’ll be enough. Most of TikTok is video and audio — which is more difficult for moderators to track and manage than text. And TikTok’s famous algorithm doesn’t help: During Q1 of this year, the company apparently admitted that more than 60% of videos with harmful misinformation were viewed before being removed. Essentially, the features that make TikTok popular are the same features that make it more difficult to catch misinformation before it spreads.
You said it. There’s certainly reason to worry. False info on TikTok has already directly affected elections in Germany, Colombia, and the Philippines. And it’s messed with users’ understanding of major political events both at home (see: the search of Mar-a-Lago) and abroad (see: the Russia-Ukraine War). Plus, TikTok has a bad track record outside of politics, too (see: health-related myths on everything from vaccines to diets).
Social media can be a breeding ground for misinformation and harassment during US elections. We've seen the harm that the likes of Twitter and Facebook have caused. And with some fearing TikTok is “following in their footsteps,” only time will tell whether this plan will make a difference on For You Pages...or ballots.
The weekend means more time to do the things you love. For many of us, that’s reading. But we can’t Skimm it all for you. So instead, we’re giving you a look at the reads we’ve saved, texted, and emailed to our friends…
That’s It. You’re Dead to Me...why everyone is suddenly “toxic.” And what you should (or shouldn’t) do about it.
The Astrology Reading That Blew Up My Life…she knew Philippe wasn’t her soulmate. But someone born in Paris on November 2, 1968 was.
The Rise of the Worker Productivity Score...how companies across industry sectors are tracking, recording, and ranking their workers.
Post-Roe, More Americans Want Their Tubes Tied. It Isn’t Easy...especially for those who just don’t want kids.
Downtime doesn’t have to mean doing nothing. Here’s one idea for making the most of your weekend.
The bad news? There are just 16 days left until Labor Day, aka the unofficial end of summer. The good news? There are 16 days left until the unofficial end of summer. That means if you haven’t gotten to everything you wanted to do (and, honestly, who has?), there’s plenty of time for one, two, or even a few last hurrahs. So put together an end-of-summer bucket list. Starting with…
Get outside: Cooler, cloudier days are on the horizon, so now’s the time for all the fun in the sun. You could go on a big bike ride or hike. You could attend an outdoor movie or concert. You could spend a lazy afternoon in a hammock. You could go camping (or glamping). And, you could play a game of pickleball.
Fire up the grill: This is your last chance to whip up whatever recipes you’ve been meaning to make all summer. So take advantage of summer’s bounty and throw one more backyard BBQ — complete with honey-glazed pepper chicken, grilled summer squash, fish tacos, corn and poblano chile salad, and yes, hot dogs and hamburgers.
Take a staycation: Even if you don’t have time, energy, or money for a vacation, you can still enjoy a much-needed break at home. So turn on your OOO and play tourist in your own city or town, followed by dinner at your favorite restaurant. Or spend the day doing absolutely nothing.
Go for a swim: Even if you’re not near a beach, chances are, you are near a lake, pond, river, or pool. (Yes, inflatable options count, too.) So make a day out squeezing in one last dip — just invite a few friends, pack a cooler with drinks and snacks, and grab a portable speaker.
Make your own Choco Tacos: Because, why not?
Eyes On: The 2022 Midterms
The midterm elections have a big impact on the policies that affect our day-to-day lives. So we’re here to help you Skimm Your Ballot. And Skimm what’s going on next week...
In Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) is running to keep his job — while Rep. Charlie Crist, a current Democratic House member and former Republican governor, wants it back. But first, he’ll have to beat the other Dem front-runner. Meanwhile, another Democratic House member, Val Demings, is expected to become the party’s nominee for the Senate. And take on Sen. Marco Rubio (R) in November.
In New York, the state’s highest court declared earlier this year that the new district maps were unconstitutional and had to be redrawn — delaying primaries for US Congress and the State Senate. Now, New Yorkers will head to the polls for the second time and cast their ballots in a range of competitive contests. Including a “cross-Manhattan clash of the titans” between longtime House Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D) and Jerry Nadler (D).
PS: The results of these elections are up to the voters. Click here to learn more about how to make your vote count.
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