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Facebook steps up fight against fake news

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Facebook is expanding its fight against misinformation by showing users more fact-checked stories below articles on the same topic.

The tech firm faced criticism after the U.S. presidential election that it didn’t do enough to stop fake news from spreading on the social network.

In April, Facebook said it was testing a way to show “related articles” before a user reads a shared story.

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“Since starting this test, we’ve heard that Related Articles helps give people more perspectives and additional information, and helps them determine whether the news they are reading is misleading or false. So we’re rolling this out more broadly,” wrote Sara Su, Facebook’s News Feed product manager in an updated blog post on Thursday.

She said the company was using “updated machine learning” to flag potential hoaxes so fact checkers can review these stories.

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“In addition to seeing which stories are disputed by third-party fact checkers, people want more context to make informed decisions about what they read and share,” she wrote.

Meanwhile, the company is also placing tips for spotting misinformation in local newspapers and radio stations, CNN reported.

Facebook also directed users to these tips in a post at the top of its News Feed in Kenya, days before the country’s August 8 election.

“We’ve developed a three-part strategy to stop the spread of misinformation: disrupting the economic incentives for the spammers who attempt to distribute false news, building new products and helping people better identify false news and report it,” Ebele Okobi, Facebook Africa’s director of policy, told the news outlet in a statement.

Photo: Facebook icon. (Associated Press)

Tags: facebook, fake news

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