Cover Story


Fukushima Treated Water Release

As Japan began releasing treated radioactive water on August 24, 2023, false images have been circulating and shared on Chinese and Taiwanese social media purporting to show the wastewater discharge along with other rumors surrounding the Fukushima wastewater release.

Here are fact-checking stories TFC has published since August 21, 2023.


Digital Literacy in the age of AI

With the advancement of artificial intelligence technology, including OpenAI's ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot launched in November 2022, and AI image generator tools, generating text and images has become more accessible- and also more difficult for people to distinguish between truth and falsehood. AI-generated content has posed an existential growing threat all over the world.

In this section, we have compiled fact-checks and media literacy articles (in Chinese) related to fake AI-generated photos, face generator apps, deepfakes, and ChatGPT.


2023 Chinese Spy Balloon

From January 28 to February 4, 2023, a massive Chinese-operated high-altitude balloon was seen in North American airspace. On February 4, the U.S. Air Force shot down the balloon over U.S. territorial waters off the coast of South Carolina, after it spent days traveling across the country.

Although the suspected spy Balloon has been shot down, rumors continue to spread in Taiwan.

A series of photos purported to show the remains of the balloon. But none of them is linked to the current news event. Our fact-check:

Another video claimed to show the U.S. firing 3 missiles to shoot down the alleged spy balloon. However, 3 trails that appeared in the video were left by fighter jets. According to the U.S. Dept of Defense, a fighter fired 1 AIM-9X Sidewinder missile at the balloon. Fact-check:

You can find our fact-check on the suspected spy balloon (in Chinese) and an overview (in English) on this page.


Nancy Pelosi's Asia tour

As US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi arrived in Taiwan late Tuesday (August 2), tensions between Taiwan and China have been escalating. Shortly after Pelosi’s arrival, China announced three days of military exercises and live-fire drills to encircle Taiwan from August 4-7. 

Pelosi had concluded her 19-hour-visit in Taiwan on August 3 and headed to South Korea. 

Pelosi’s Asia trip and China’s response have sparked a misinformation wave on social media since July 29. Taiwan FactCheck Center has been closely monitoring the situation as well as narratives on internet space. We will constantly update our work here.


2022 Taiwanese Local Elections

As Taiwan’s year-end local elections are nearing, the Taiwan FactCheck Center has noticed that political misinformation is rearing its head in the lead-up to what is locally known as the “nine-in-one elections.” 

With the nine-in-one elections – signifying the nine levels of public offices to be filled with the highest being the mayorship – taking place at the end of this November, disinformation pertaining to politicians and aiming to spur people’s political sentiments has also been picking up the pace to “warm up” alongside the election campaigns.


The assassination of Japan's Ex-leader Shinzo Abe

Disinformation flooded the Taiwanese Internet as news of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe being assaulted broke out, much of which followed a typical pattern of how disinformation exploited the limitation of breaking news. The Taiwan FactCheck Center has released no less than seven fact-checking reports within two weeks debunking related fake news and clarifying misinformation regarding the incident. 

The news about the gun attack against Shinzo Abe in Japan on July 8th was soon picked up in Taiwan, and in no time the social media platforms and messaging apps were overflowed with rumors, photos, and video footages that claimed to carry details about the assassination and its location. The information however was cluttered and mostly came from personal social media accounts, with their authenticity in doubt. This is where fake news fabricators came in and took advantage of the confusion.

*Media inquiry: If you have questions about TFC's work on debunking falsehoods on the assassination of Shinzo Abe, please reach out to us at or



* 必填欄位/ required
選擇你想訂閱的電子報/ Sign up to