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How to bust fake news on Facebook
SECURITY

How to bust fake news on Facebook 

“We believe in giving people a voice and that we cannot become arbiters of truth ourselves, so we’re approaching this problem carefully,” Adam Mosseri, vice-president of news feed at Facebook said Thursday.” 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 organizations.”

“We’ve found that a lot of fake news is financially motivated. Spammers make money by masquerading as well-known news organizations, and posting hoaxes that get people to visit to their sites, which are often mostly ads,” he said. “So we’re doing several things to reduce the financial incentives.”

The company is rolling out some updates to its service that will help users determine which posts are real and which ones are bogus.

Among these is a way to make it easier for users to report any hoax they see on Facebook.

The company also wants to help users decide for themselves which posts they can safely share.

Facebook also started a third-party fact-checking organization

“We’ve started a program to work with third-party fact-checking organizations that are signatories of Poynter’s International Fact Checking Code of Principles,” said Mosseri. “We’ll use the reports from our community, along with other signals, to send stories to these organizations.”

 If the fact checking organizations identify a story as fake, the story will get flagged as disputed. Users will find 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 users will see a warning that the story has been disputed.

Once a story has been flagged, “it can’t be made into an ad and promoted, either,” said Mosseri.

Facebook also eliminated the ability to spoof domains. The company hopes this will “reduce the prevalence of sites that pretend to be real publications.”

“On the publisher side, we are analyzing publisher sites to detect where policy enforcement actions might be necessary,” said Mosseri.

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