Today, native advertising and discovery platform Taboola announced a new product feature aimed at fighting misinformation shared on TikTok and other social media.

The update to Taboola News gives recommendations for reliable news sources via publishing partners, as well as working directly with device manufacturers like Samsung.

Read next: TikTok is setting the ground rules for social media

What it does. Taboola News can now be installed on mobile device wallpapers by manufacturers, while also serving news recommendations to users directly on the mobile lockscreen. Recommendations from trusted publishers can also be delivered through browser notifications refreshed throughout the day. The product is now available in 80 markets globally.

Taboola News lockscreen recommendation. Image: Taboola.

The need for news. Journalism ratings service Newsguard found that last year eight of nine people under 18 were exposed to misinformation about COVID-19 in the first 35 minutes of a TikTok session. This year, 60 percent of videos with harmful misinformation are viewed by TikTok users before the content is taken down, according to TikTok’s own findings.

Why we care. Platforms like TikTok are designed to grow their audience and keep them watching videos, which cuts into time spent consuming other content like news. So, news publishers need ways to get to more readers. And, oddly enough, the existence of fake news on TikTok and social media shows that those platforms’ users do have some desire to be informed. 

By pumping news recommendations into the mobile device lockscreen, there’s a better chance that some of the accurate news will get to the users first.


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