Shenzhen-based marketing firm CN Solomo Technology (欣所罗门科技) has issued an apology after the popular short video app Douyin filed a lawsuit against it for spreading false information.
Douyin issued an official statement (in Chinese) on Tuesday regarding the rising number of false allegation and accusations against its app over the past two weeks. The company said over 1000 posts and articles on Weibo, Baidu’s Bai Jiahao (百家号), and other platforms were found containing fabricated content, some of which have become viral posts. These posts, which implicated that Douyin purposefully let pornographic and inappropriate content run rampant on its platform to attract attention and traffic, have negatively reflected on Douyin’s brand.
In one post headlined as “four-year-old daughter paralyzed after father accidentally dropped her while reenacting a viral video for Douyin,” was, in fact, an image of a father carrying his daughter who had climbed out the window and accidentally fell.
Another article also falsely accused Douyin of putting up a video of a couple conducting “off-limits” behavior in a public park. The screen grab of the video was later found to be a popular image featured in the fake news of all sorts.
Douyin said two marketing and media companies–CN Solomo Technology and YDNewmedia (有点牛传媒)–are managing many of these accounts that were spreading rumors and allegations, and Douyin has pursued legal actions against the two company. CN Solomo Technology has issued an apology (in Chinese) in response to the lawsuit.
The company said in the statement it is deeply sorry that the accounts under its management been spreading rumors posts, which might have influenced or even harmed Douyin’s brand. Adding that it has immediately removed the controversial posts and that it will “rethink third-party auditing measures and strengthen content inspection standards to avoid such cases from happening in the future.”
Bytedance-owned Douyin, also known as Tik Tok, have become wildly popular in China since its initial launch in 2016. It became the world’s most popular non-game app in 2018 according to iOS download charts and has announced in July that it has 500 million monthly active users worldwide. Douyin has been wanting to overturn its bad rep after repeatedly stepping on government red tape, failing to keep inappropriate content in check.