India

A bid to curb fake news

<br>To address this, Flipkart Video in support of the United Nations Verified campaign is launching ‘Fake or Not?' – an interactive quiz featuring actress, comedian, and writer Mallika Dua – to help curb the spread of misinformation.

IANSlife spoke to Prakash Sikaria Vice-President of Growth and Monetisation, Flipkart, to know more about the show, the seriousness of the issue and the content strategy of Flipkart Videos.

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Excerpts:

What is the idea behind ‘Fake or Not?' And how was this formulated?

Sikaria: As we continue to remain indoors during these difficult times, there is a growing threat that we tackle on a daily basis – of people being misinformed and the spread of fake news. To help address this, United Nations Verified campaign is launching ‘Fake or Not?' – a new interactive quiz show under the Flipkart Video Originals umbrella, that elevates the e-commerce platforms commitment towards curbing the spread of misinformation.

Featuring comedian, and writer Mallika Dua, the show thoughtfully combines education with a subtle touch of humor, while helping the audience understand the importance of sharing verified information. Many questions will address common misconceptions on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mallika Dua is playing a new role as news anchor Mythika Dutt, who is committed to debunk fake news and fight ignorance through her ‘news segment'. Along with quashing inaccurate news, the interactive quiz show will also bust common myths that people have come to believe as facts. The twist of comedy makes the show entertaining and engaging for users.

What kind of content would the audience get to see?

Sikaria: The format of the show follows a unique interactive quiz format where Mallika will don the role of a news anchor and address five topics asking the audience to guess what's ‘Fake or Real'. In line with our short form mobile-first strategy, each episode will run for 8-10 minutes where the audience will be asked a set of questions followed by Mallika revealing fake news vs real facts. The key takeaway is building awareness and busting myths that are often considered the truth.

How important it is for platforms to keep a check on what they are communicating and how easy/difficult is it for the audience to identify fake news?

Sikaria: With people spending more time indoors, they have been increasingly consuming information through a range of channels. According to recent reports, the spread of fake news (especially videos and images), continues to be a growing concern.

There has never been a greater need for consuming accurate and verified information. Our lives can depend on it and it is important for organisations and individuals both, to work towards ensuring shared content is verified. For this reason, we are happy to support the United Nations Verified campaign and extend the purpose of the campaign to our new show ‘Fake or Not?'.

By using entertainment as a platform for education, we believe this is a step in the right direction and will help drive an important message home.

What kind of response are you expecting?

Sikaria: With people continuing to stay indoors, the need for positive entertainment is only growing. We will continue to innovate and bring relevant content on our platform that appeals to the mobile audience. We have introduced multiple creative formats and genres over the past several months, all of which have witnessed great engagement with our consumers.

In the current period, interactive quizzes are growing in popularity as it not only allows the audience to participate, but also provides each person an opportunity to win tangible prizes.

Keeping in mind the thematic relevance of our new ‘Fake or Not?' during a time like this, we are confident that users will appreciate the concept of the show.

Tell us about the content strategy Flipkart videos adopts as it has started doing shows in different formats.

Sikaria: The focus for Flipkart Video continues to be on mobile-first short form original content with interactivity being a central element for the new shows coming up on the platform.

Our success lies in the fact that we create every single offering keeping in mind what consumers are seeking and what they truly care about. Innovative interactive quiz as a format sets us apart from other entertainment platforms considering they are snackable in format, very high on engagement and possess a direct commerce integration. At Flipkart Video, we believe that we are carving a niche for entertainment and engagement in India.

(Puja Gupta can be contacted at puja.g@ians.in)

–IANS<br>pg/tb/

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