Facebook to Stop ‘Fake News’ Same Way as ‘Click-Bait’ via Algorithm

Zuckerberg Facebook (Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)
Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press

Facebook will stop “fake news” using a similar algorithm as the platform’s one against “click-bait,” according to CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

“In Zuckerberg’s view, according to Fast Company, tackling click bait required a rejiggering of the site’s algorithms, as assisted by users’ input,” reports Fortune. “The solution is similar to the approach the site is now taking to improve the situation around ‘information diversity or misinformation or building common ground’—euphemisms for the more popular conceptions of ‘filter bubbles,’ ‘fake news,’ and ‘echo chambers.'”

“Now it’s not gone a hundred percent but it’s a much smaller problem than it used to be,” said Zuckerberg on the issue of click-bait. “It’s not like they are problems that exist because there’s some kind of underlying, nefarious motivation.”

“There are very different cultural norms ranging from country to country,” he continued. “In some places, the idea that showing a woman’s breasts would be controversial feels backwards. But there are other places where images that are at all sexually suggestive, even if they don’t show nudity, just because of a pose, that’s over the line.”

Zuckerberg went on to claim that balancing free speech “is a tricky part of running this company,” adding, “In setting the nudity policy, for example, we are not trying to impose our values on folks, we’re trying to reflect what the community thinks.”

“We have come to this realization that a bunch of people sitting in a room in California is not going to be the best way to reflect all the local values that people have around the world,” the Facebook CEO declared. “So we need to evolve the systems for collective decision making. It’s an interesting problem… It’s just a constant work in progress.”

Last month, The Daily Mail reported that Facebook, which has become notorious for banning conservative and anti-SJW users, as well as harmless comedy pages, has started to roll out anti-“fake news” features, which are run by partisan fact-checking services led by The Poynter Institute.

“Users have reported seeing a pop-up window when they attempted to share articles that were deemed inaccurate by third-party fact-checkers,” reported The Daily Mail. “Facebook itself will not decide what is real and what is considered fake. Instead, it is enlisting The Poynter Institute, a Florida journalism school, to sift through content. The Poynter Institute is the host of the International Fact Checking Network which bills itself as a ‘global alliance of fact checkers’. Its members include ABC News, Politico, The Associated Press, Snopes.com and The Washington Post.”

Facebook has also started placing “how to spot false news” pop-ups on user timelines.


The term “fake news” has often been used to smear independent conservative news sources, such as Breitbart News, despite the fact that several news outlets have been exposed by Breitbart for publishing their own “fake news,” including the Independent, the Daily Beast, CNN (numerous times), the Atlantic, The New York Times, and The Washington Post.

Though Facebook and The Poynter Institute deem Snopes as an allegedly “neutral” fact-checking service, many of Snopes’ fact-checkers were discovered by conservative media to be openly left-wing and self-described “progressives.”

As previously reported, “Snopes fact-checker Arturo R. Garcia openly labels himself as a ‘progressive,’ attempted to compare Trump supporters to racists on Twitter, misattributed a quote about him to Breitbart News, and acts as the editor of ‘Racialicious’ – ‘A blog about the intersection of race and culture’.”

Fellow Snopes fact-checker Bethania Palmer attempted to link Trump to the KKK, defended a racist professor, wrote numerous left-wing articles for Raw Story — including two attempting to associate former Breitbart News executive chairman Stephen K. Bannon to domestic violence and white supremacy — and acts as a contributor for the “progressive” non-profit Truthout.

David Emery, another fact-checker and staff writer at Snopes, openly asked on Twitter whether there were “any un-angry Trump supporters.”

Despite their clear political biases, all three were tasked with fact-checking political candidates over the 2016 presidential election under the guise of a neutral service.

In February, Apple CEO Tim Cook, who financially supported Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, called on tech companies to filter out “fake news,” while Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg also penned a plan to tackle “fake news” last month, highlighting his intention to roll out the fact-checking feature.

Charlie Nash is a reporter for Breitbart Tech. You can follow him on Twitter @MrNashington or like his page at Facebook.


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