On Friday, October 26, the Global Taiwan Institute held a public seminar titled “Combating Fake News and Disinformation in Taiwan.” During the controversial pension reforms debate in Taiwan, netizens and users of a popular messaging application on the island began to see a flood of messages and websites that carried false claims about the central government’s plans. Taiwan’s national security apparatuses revealed that a growing volume of disinformation are the products of “content farms” from China. While remaining a closed society, China is exploiting the openness and transparency of Taiwan’s democratic and economic system to interfere in the island’s democratic politics and also elsewhere. How is Taiwan’s civil society responding these challenges? What lessons can other countries draw from Taiwan’s experience? What are the prospects for an international response to this common challenge? This event is the fifth installment of the Civil Society and Democracy Series, which is partially funded by the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy. The panelists of the event were: co-founders of Cofacts, Johnson Liang and Billion Lee; lead IFTF Research Affiliate Nick Monaco; and Deputy Director at the Project 2049 Institute Rachel Burton.
The Civil Society and Democracy series will continue throughout the year and focus on various topics relating to Taiwan’s democracy and human rights. The Taiwan Foundation for Democracy is a non-profit, non-partisan organization and is the first national democracy assistance foundation to be established in Asia, and is devoted to strengthening democracy and human rights in Taiwan and abroad.