Facebook, Twitter Puts China Under the Microscope

Published December 5th, 2021 - 09:33 GMT
Facebook, Twitter Puts China Under the Microscope

While China is focusing on containing the new COVID outbreak, Facebook and Twitter have been busy taking down China-based networks and accounts. However, each tech giant has its own reasons for doing so.

Facebook Takes Down Chinese Network Behind Fake Expert

On one hand, Facebook's parent company, Meta, said it has taken down a Chinese misinformation network that attempted to spread claims about COVID-19 using a fake Swiss biologist named Wilson Edwards.

In addition, the tech giant had taken down over 600 accounts linked to the network, which it said included a “coordinated cluster” of Chinese state employees.

According to Meta, the network focused on a fake Swiss biologist named Wilson Edwards who first emerged on 24 July 2021, claiming in Facebook and Twitter posts that the United States was pressuring the World Health Organization to blame the virus on China. Various media outlets, including Global Times and People’s Daily, published headlines linked to Edwards’ posts about US “intimidation”.

Twitter Removes Thousands of China State-Linked Accounts Spreading Propaganda

On another hand, Twitter has announced removing a total of 2,160 accounts linked to Chinese regional and state propaganda campaigns. 

Twitter claims that the accounts were attempting to push back against allegations of human rights abuses by the Chinese government against the Uyghur population in Xinjiang.

According to Twitter, 2,048 of the removed accounts “amplified Chinese Communist Party narratives related to the treatment of the Uyghur population,” while a further 112 were connected to a private company backed by the regional government.

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