Fake stories to get 'Disputed' tag on Facebook

Mar 07, 2017, 00:31
Fake stories to get 'Disputed' tag on Facebook

This feature is not yet available to all Facebook users.

Facebook has begun to mark fake news as promised by Mark Zuckerberg at the end of 2016 to combat false information and.

Facebook users can flag a fake news story by clicking on a gray downward arrow button on the right side of an article. Also, being overly aggressive against fake news may not be in the business interests of Facebook since it could result in lower user engagement which translates to reduced advertising revenues. The story will then be sent on to Politifact and Snopes who will investigate and determine whether the story is incorrect. It was reported that fake news articles were already being circulated regarding German Chancellor Angela Merkel, which makes testing in Germany a logical choice. Both organizations are participants in a Fact-checkers code of principles that is maintained by the Poynter Institute.

Facebook also launched a new section on its site explaining the process of how a story gets marked as disputed.

The feature is not yet available to everyone. At times, the misinformation campaigns bordered on unsafe, as fake stories teasing civil war or threatening riots if a particular candidate won or lost became more and more popular.

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On its help centre page, Facebook has added a question "How is news marked as disputed on Facebook?"

However, such a flagging system on Facebook will likely not be enough to solve the whole fake news problem.

"Sometimes people share fake news without knowing it", reads a pop up window that appears when a user clicks on the "disputed" label. When two or more of the organizations decide the story is fake news, the "disputed" label will be connected to it.

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.

The disputed tag is meant to inform users that the information presented in a news article is not accurate.