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Facebook's first real attempt to fight fake news

diciembre 4, 2019

Facebook has released an update of its platform to stem the fake news, the first of those promised to end the spread of false news.

Facebook has released an update of its own platform to curb fake news, the first of those promised to put an end to the spread of false news. Users can mark a news by verifying the truth and report suspicious content distributed in the social network by labeling it as false news.

Fake News, sensationalism with ulterior motives

The false – fake news news in English are characterized by sensational titles, but the contents are fabricated stories, that is generated in such a way as to attract clicks and therefore with economic interests behind them: the objective to generate traffic on sit that I sell advertising to impressions. But not only that, in some cases the goal of fake news would be to change the perception of reality, spreading false beliefsThe phenomenon dates back to the recent American presidential campaign of 2016, a political season during which false publicists perfected the system by viralising it. Sharing sensational information has done the rest and many believe that Trump has benefited more than anyone else.

Fake News Facebook

Fake News, real problems

False news is an increasingly real problem. One study found that at least 75% of those who come across false news believe it to be credible, this happens because most web readers nIt does not have the ability to control the sources or evaluate their loses.The new Facebook updates are just the first step in a series of measures that the company has decided to put in place to balance the proliferation of disinformation. Facebook, from his, has decided not to expose itself decisively, so the disputed news will be labeled as controversial and non explicitly as "false.

Label Fake News on Facebook

This new feature is called Disputed Posts (controversial posts). By clicking on a new button that appears in the top right corner of a post, you can mark a story as fictitious. In the event that a sufficient number of people "flag" the content, this will be sent to a member of the Poynter's International Fact Checking Network, a third party that will analyze the news to verify its truthfulness. In the event that content turns out to be false, it will remain shareable, but it will come marked as controversial and this label will remain clearly visible on the platform.For the time being this function will only be active in the United States. One wonders what can happen if one encounters politically sensitive stories, or hyperpartisan titles that call into question global impacts such as climate change. From Facebook they have made it known that the company pays attention to maintaining its super partes role so that no one's individual freedom of expression is undermined.

Fake News algorithms and media company

Faceboook, although not declaring itself a media company, to the reality of the facts, and how. Through its algorithms it makes customized editorial choices whenever each of us opens the application or the website. And there is no transparency as to how these algorithms choose to act.Also the fact that the news marked as controversial are analyzed by third parties the expression of a commitment that is not only late, but also non-conclusive. Stories can become viral in just a few minutes and Facebook admits that it has no idea of ​​the technical timing of the content control process. Regardless of marking a content, Facebook has not actually changed the algorithmic nature of the problem, consequently, the false news could continue to spread undisturbed. For example, if a page spread five contentious content over the course of a week, all five contents would be reported, but the page would still have the possibility to publish and share others, undisturbed. Each controversial story therefore remains a single episode.Fake News Facebook

Shares and Fake news

However, it is a matter of establishing what Facebook's credibility is and the value it attaches to content shared on the social media, which could be impacting if users cast doubt on their beliefs and beliefs based on the sensationalist news they encounter, share and do not verify. Perhaps the mark option will lead to an arbitrary use of this possibility. And of psychological implications, Facebook should take into account. Many people consider the semantic decision made by Facebook irresponsible. Preferring controversial to false opens a debate, and precisely on the basis of this principle that the false news spread. Probably, the most incisive interventions by Facebook will take place in an algorithmic way and some of the initiatives that will take hold will not even be seen. For example, the ranking of some news will depend on the number of shares, but in this way we would find ourselves again faced with a tendentious content.

Probably, the only appropriate structural intervention should really be the reduction of the possibility of sharing the content reported. The false news, the fake news, is a phenomenon thanks to the shares.


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