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Costa Rica launches platform dedicated to fighting fake news

August 1, 2019

The Costa Rican government announced on Wednesday the launch of a platform “to counteract the impacts of false content that circulates on the Internet.”

Called “Gobierno Aclara” (Government Clarifies), the initiative comes as an apparent response to a widely circulated story incorrectly claiming the Finance Ministry plans to raise the value-added tax.

The Communication Ministry will manage the “Gobierno Aclara” website and several social-media accounts to help Costa Ricans verify information disseminated online via “anonymous pages or profiles.”

In addition to visiting the website, the public can follow “Gobierno Aclara” on Facebook and  Twitter, or via messaging platform WhatsApp.

“Misinformation and false content is one of the challenges facing democracies,” said Nancy Marín, Minister of Communication. “Our responsibility is to use technology platforms to guarantee the right to information for our citizens.”

In a message published to his social-media accounts, Costa Rican President Carlos Alvarado said “disseminating false information has dire effects on democracies.”

“Other countries have already suffered the consequences caused by the spread of lies,” he wrote. “Let’s not let that happen in Costa Rica.”

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