Social media giant Facebook will reportedly soon be paying news wire Reuters to fact-check and verify news headlines, user-generated videos and photos, and other content in English and Spanish.
TechCrunch reports that news wire service Reuters is the latest media firm to join the ranks of Facebook’s fact-checking program. Reuters recently launched its Fact Check business unit and blog and will be working with Facebook to fact-check videos, photos, news headlines and more on the social media platform.
The four-person team from Reuters will focus on reviewing user-generated videos and photos as well as news headlines and content posted in English and Spanish. The team will be publishing its findings on the Reuters Fact Check blog where it will list the core claim of a Facebook post and why it’s false, partially false, or true. Facebook will use these conclusions to label posts on the site and downrank them in the News Feed algorithm.
When asked about Reuter’s deal with Facebook, Reuter’s Director of Global Partnerships Jessica April told TechCrunch: “I can’t disclose any more about the terms of the financial agreement but I can confirm that they do pay for this service.”
Reuters will be joining the Associated Press, PolitiFact, Factcheck.org, and four others as part of Facebook’s U.S. fact-checking partner program. Facebook currently offers fact-checking services in over 60 countries. Reuters plans to place two fact-checking staffers in Washington D.C. and two in Mexico City. Reuters executive Hazel Baker stated that there is room for the fact-checking team to grow over time.
Baker told Reuters that she was aware that a major issue with Facebook’s fact-checking is how slow the site can be to direct misleading content to fact-checkers. “One thing we have as an advantage of Reuters is an understanding of the importance of speed” Baker stated. When asked about Facebook’s refusal to fact-check political ads, Baker replied: “We wouldn’t comment on that Facebook policy. That’s ultimately up to them”