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Facebook to boost alerts against fake news for PH’s May polls

By: - Reporter / @CMarquezINQ
/ 07:31 PM January 24, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — Facebook will intensify its warnings against false reports in the social media platform in the run up to this year’s midterm elections, citing heightened proliferation of fake news during such period.

Katie Harbath, director of Facebook’s Global Politics and Government Outreach Team, said Thursday the social media giant would place “fact-checking” label on posts branded as fake news online.

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She also said they would work with third party fact-checkers such as Poynter Institute and Philippine news site Rappler in identifying fake articles or reports.

“Fact-checkers can review those posts and rate the accuracy, and if they rate those as false, we then take action where we dramatically reduce the reach,” Harbath explained.

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“I will see related articles underneath that post with the fact-checking label so that I can know that it has been marked as false,” she added.

And if a Facebook user would still choose to share the false report, the user would still get a notification that it has been marked false, Harbath noted.

Meanwhile, users will also get notifications for sharing reports that were later found to be false.

“Let’s say [the post] was shared before Rappler marked it as false, once Rappler marked it as false. I then will get a notification saying that something I have shared has been marked as false,” Harbath said.

‘Transparent advertising, bad actors’

Harbath further said an added feature on Facebook pages would show information about the page’s advertisements and past actions, including page name changes.

“We added an ‘Info and Ads’ tab on any page on Facebook. You can see all the ads that the page is currently running. You can see information about when the page is created, if there (have) been any page name changes,” Harbath said.

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Harbath said the information will help users to determine if some of the pages are enforcing their “political influence” to the public.

“This can help users to give more information about these pages that might be trying to influence them also on the political side. Once they might be trying to influence their political discourse,” she said.

Harbath discussed an example that in the United States some “bad actors” use Facebook pages and turn them into political propaganda such as changing the name of “I Love Kittens” to “I Love Trump.”

“Some of the trends we can often see (are) sometimes particularly in election, you can see sometimes we see bad actors they have been running for years, they have been trying and slowly they start to change the name from I Love Kittens to I Love Trump then start posting political content,” she said. /kga

TOPICS: 2019 elections, elections, Facebook, fake news, local news, News, Philippine news updates, technology
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