X introduces feature to post Community Notes in India before upcoming elections

Weeks before the national elections in India, Elon Musk-owned X said it is rolling out support for posting Community Notes — the company’s crowd-sourced fact-checking program — in the key overseas market. The first set of contributors from India will start posting notes from today and more will be accepted over time, X said. Community Notes now active on India! Over time, the company has allowed members from different countries to start posting Community Notes to provide local context better. India was one of the last major markets where Community Notes had not previously expanded.

Weeks before the national elections in India, the Elon Musk-owned company X announced that it is introducing support for Community Notes in the key overseas market. This unique program allows users to crowd-source fact-checking by providing more context to popular posts, ultimately debunking misinformation and offering broader insights. In a recent tweet, Musk shared the exciting news that Community Notes is now active in India.

“Community Notes now active on India! https://t.co/cLcpcTIlcT” – Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 4, 2024

Back in December of 2022, X enabled the ability for users globally to view Community Notes, but only a select few countries were able to contribute to the program. However, as time passed, X recognized the importance of providing local context and expanded the program to include members from different countries. Now, with the most recent rollout, Community Notes has contributors from a whopping 69 countries.

Additionally, X also introduced Community Notes for images and videos last year, previously known as Birdwatch. With the Indian national elections quickly approaching, there is a pressing need for social media platforms to combat election-related misinformation. While X has not announced any specific efforts geared towards the Indian elections, Community Notes serves as a helpful tool for fact-checking on the platform.

Despite the success of Community Notes, X has at times struggled to control the spread of misinformation, even with the help of contributors who provide additional context to stories. The program may face an even tougher challenge in India’s complex multilingual political landscape.

Last year, X backtracked on its previous decision to ban political ads on the platform and reallowed them under new management. This move was met with controversy and sparked discussions on the impact of social media on political campaigns.

However, X’s stay in the Indian market has not been without its challenges. The company has faced a legal battle against the government’s orders to block certain posts. Earlier this year, X complied with authorities and withheld accounts and posts related to farmers’ protests in India. The company emphasized that they are still awaiting a decision on a writ appeal challenging these blocking orders.

In an interview with BBC last year, Musk acknowledged India’s strict social media rules and stated that the company is limited by the laws of the country.

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Max Chen

Max Chen is an AI expert and journalist with a focus on the ethical and societal implications of emerging technologies. He has a background in computer science and is known for his clear and concise writing on complex technical topics. He has also written extensively on the potential risks and benefits of AI, and is a frequent speaker on the subject at industry conferences and events.

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