The Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) is working with social media platform TikTok to ensure that the content posted on the platform is decent and suitable for Kenyan viewers.
KFCB Ag. CEO Joel Wamalwa said that as the State Agency mandated to regulate the creation, broadcasting, distribution, and exhibition of audiovisual content in the country, they are confident that the discussion with Tiktok and other platforms, together with other stakeholders, would bear fruit in terms of ensuring that the content conforms to Kenya’s culture, moral values, and national aspirations.
Speaking Thursday during a workshop between TikTok and government agencies, Wamalwa said that the workshop is a timely engagement as it comes following a series of meetings with regards to TikTok operations in Kenya.
‘It is very gratifying to know that this workshop is a continuation of our fruitful engagement that also includes training, and we look forward to further engagement in the future,’ said Wamalwa.
He emphasised that it is of the utmost importance that we protect our minors from exposure to inappropriate content.
He continued… ‘The Ministry of Information, Communications, and the Digital Economy Cabinet Secretary (CS) Eliud Owalo said that we need to protect our cultural values through audiovisual content’.
He said that as KFCB, they welcomed TikToks’ commitment to working closely with partners to keep the platform free from unsuitable content in a push towards a safe online space, especially for children.
‘Our children are more tech savvy, and every time a parent puts down their phone, they are quick to grab it, and the most likely platform they will run to is TikTok,’ he said.
Wamalwa said that they are looking forward to working with TikTok on other initiatives like the parental digital literacy programme, which is geared towards giving parents and caregivers the requisite skills to guide children in the responsible use of digital platforms.
‘Understanding safety features and community guidelines on these platforms is key to ensuring that children remain safe online,’ said Wamalwa as he explained that recently, there have been online games and challenges with different steps, with some having the last step as committing suicide, and there have been unfortunate cases where children and teenagers have lost their lives.
TikTok Director of Government Relations and Public Policy Fortune Mgwili-Sibanda said that in Kenya, they have seen a rise in the misuse of the live feature on TikTok where people are coming in for sexual solicitation, which violates their community guidelines.
Sibanda said that they were aware of it, and in the meeting between President William Ruto and TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew, TikTok admitted that they were aware of the misuse and were doubling their moderation systems to be able to eradicate it.
He explained that in the last three months, they pulled down 91 million pieces of content globally for violating their community guidelines.
Sibanda said that the challenge was that bad actors always tried new ways to circumvent processes and systems, and even if they put in policies and guidelines, there would be people who would try to violate them. They are working hard to stay ahead of these bad actors by stopping them before they post the bad videos.
‘About 95 per cent of what was pulled down was done by our machine learning system,’ said Sibanda, adding that the 91 million looks big, but it only represents 0.6 per cent of the total content uploaded on the platform in the three months period.
He said that by and large, most content on TikTok is good content, as he explained that they were not ignoring the fact there was bad content, and this is why they are having workshops with various State Agencies to see how they could improve their systems.
‘In the first quarter of 2023, about 88.8 per cent of the content we took down was actually taken down before it was viewed by anyone, and our focus is now on the remaining 12 per cent and how we can minimise that,’ said Sibanda.
Other state agencies involved in the initiative are the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Kenya Police Service, Department of Children Services, Communications Authority of Kenya, Ministry of Information, Communications, and the Digital Economy, Media Council of Kenya, Judiciary, and National Cohesion and Integration Commission, among others.
Source: Kenya News Agency