Facebook is going to start fact checking, labelling, and burying fake news and hoaxes in the News Feed, the company announced on Thursday.
The decision comes after Facebook received heated criticism for its role in spreading a deluge of political misinformation during the U.S. presidential election.
To combat fake news, Facebook has partnered with a shortlist of media organisations, including Snopes and ABC News, that are part of an international fact-checking network lead by Poynter, a nonprofit school for journalism located in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Left wing social media company goes to left-leaning fact checkers and leftist media company to label or bury our news? Censorship anyone? Start small, then it will “accidentally” spread to legitimate but facts unfriendly to the left?
Starting as a test with a small percentage of its users in the United States, Facebook will make it easier to report news stories that are fake or misleading. Once fact checkers have confirmed that the story is fake, it will be labelled as such and demoted in the News Feed.
“We’ve focused our efforts on the worst of the worst, on the clear hoaxes spread by spammers for their own gain, and on engaging both our community and third party organisations,” Facebook News Feed chief Adam Mosseri said in a company blog post on Thursday.
News Feed FYI: Addressing Hoaxes and Fake News, by Adam Mosseri, VP of Facebook.
We believe in giving people a voice and that we cannot become arbiters of truth ourselves …
If the fact checking organizations identify a story as fake, it will get flagged as disputed and there will be a link to the corresponding article explaining why. Stories that have been disputed may also appear lower in News Feed.
It will still be possible to share these stories, but you will see a warning that the story has been disputed as you share.
Once a story is flagged, it can’t be made into an ad and promoted, either.
How many years before only news that helps the PC crew will not be flagged?
UPDATE: Facebook Declares War On “Fake News”, by John Hinderaker.
Stung by complaints from liberals about the recent election, Facebook has announced that it will begin to try to weed out “fake news” from its platform. This is pretty significant, given the volume of communication that takes place on Facebook. Until now, the company has insisted that it is merely a technological platform, not an editor. Henceforth, Facebook will assume, on at least a limited basis, editorial duties. …
Who are these third-party fact checkers? Snopes, Factcheck.org, ABC News, and PolitiFact. PolitiFact and Factcheck.org are blatantly liberal operations; both can fairly be regarded as appendages of the Democratic Party. …
It isn’t hard to foresee what will happen. As on Twitter, conservatives will follow a live-and-let-live approach, while liberals will aggressively try to drive competing ideas out of circulation. Given the biased sources that will be used as fact-checkers, the result will be to give Facebook a more liberal tinge. …
My guess is that before long, a flood of “fake news” flags by liberals against posts they don’t agree with will overwhelm the ability of Facebook’s third-party fact checkers to respond. Worse, left-wing outlets like PolitiFact and Factcheck.org likely will seize the opportunity to begin censoring conservative commentary on the Facebook platform.