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Brief Published: 30 Oct 2020

US Government Launches Graphic Novel to Fight Misinformation

Real Fake

As America heads to the polls, the US Cyber Infrastructure and Security Agency (CISA) has published Real Fake, a graphic novel that aims to educate people on the dangers and risks associated with dis- and misinformation. Relatedly, social media platforms including Twitter and TikTok are introducing new features to tackle these issues ahead of election day.

CISA commissioned British creative agency Erly Stage Studios to create the comic, which tells the story of Symous, a group fighting disinformation and foreign interference in elections as polling day approaches. "While the story is fictional, many of the approaches shown are very much grounded in the reality of the technology we live with and are exposed to almost daily," commented Farid Haque, founder and chief executive of Erly Stage Studios.

Misinformation and 'fake news' have been shown to peak on social media during election cycles, according to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In a bid to address this, Twitter has introduced new tools – including a one-stop election hub and information prompts – and is reportedly working on a feature called Birdwatch that will aim to add more context to tweets.

TikTok has also launched educational resources, including an in-app election guide in partnership with trusted sources including the National Association of Secretaries of State, BallotReady and SignVote.

As noted in our Look Ahead 2021, battling misinformation and restoring consumer trust will be key issues for businesses in the year ahead. Check out our reports on the 2020 US Elections, Brand Activations and Digital Activism, for examples of positive brand response.