Facebook rolls out 'disputed tag' to crackdown on fake news

Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Zuckerberg

To mark any story with this new tag, Facebook requires its users to report the story as fake or its algorithm needs to determine such stories before hand.

However, there have been several instances of "articles" and "news", which have gone viral after being shared or tweeted millions of users but upon inspection have turned out to be fake without an ounce of credibility. "A story may be marked as disputed if these fact-checkers find the story to be fake". Stories are reviewed by independent fact checking organizations including Politifact and Snopes.com. Facebook added a section on "disputed" news to its help tools. These flagged posts would be deprioritized in news feeds, and if a user tries to share a flagged story, they'll see a warning cautioning that the story had been disputed.

"We believe in giving people a voice and that we can not become arbiters of truth ourselves, so we're approaching this problem carefully", said VP of Product for News Feed at Facebook, Adam Mosseri, in a December blog post. After the polls, Facebook finally said it'd take steps to clean up its site, but only after much badgering from critics and observers. All fact-checkers are signatories of the "code of principles" prepared by journalism non-profit organization Poynter. In November, a source told Gizmodo that the social network's fight against fake news before the election was undercut by a "fear about upsetting conservatives".

The disputed tag is meant to inform users that the information presented in a news article is not accurate. As reported by Gizmodo and Recode, this was warned, for example, before an article that Donald Trump's Android smartphone was the source of Leak's confidential information.

Twelve people treated for potential chemical weapons exposure in Mosul
Those people, who continue to remain in the sieged Mosul, are on the verge of a humanitarian disaster. For its part, the United Nations said it is working as fast as possible to help those displaced.

Most of us tend to get our daily bit of news through social media platforms.

Clinton and Barack Obama both spoke out about the problem, with the former President accusing Facebook of creating a "dust cloud of nonsense" by allowing insane theories to spread and Clinton describing the spread of false news as an "epidemic" after the election.

In the end, Facebook's solution seems to be a solid compromise that will leave both fact-checkers and free speech absolutists unsatisfied.

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.