Fake news stories abound on Facebook. Most of the postings are produced by scammers looking to make money on the number of clicks these stories receive. Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and CEO of Facebook, says they are working on a way to weed out these stories.
In the meantimes, some creative people have come up with solutions of their own.
The Washington Post ran a story on November 11, 2016 about a group of college students who developed an algorithm that authenticates what is real and what is fake on Facebook. Read about these problem solvers at this link.
A programmer named Daniel Sieradski has developed a Chrome extension called the B.S.Detector. Read about this hoax detector at "Rid Your Feed of Fake News With This Hoax-Detecting Chrome Extension"
"Some plans Facebook has for helping limit “Fake News”:
- Stronger detection. The most important thing we can do is improve our ability to classify misinformation. This means better technical systems to detect what people will flag as false before they do it themselves.
- Easy reporting. Making it much easier for people to report stories as fake will help us catch more misinformation faster.
- Third party verification. There are many respected fact checking organizations and, while we have reached out to some, we plan to learn from many more.
- Warnings. We are exploring labeling stories that have been flagged as false by third parties or our community, and showing warnings when people read or share them.
- Related articles quality. We are raising the bar for stories that appear in related articles under links in News Feed.
- Disrupting fake news economics. A lot of misinformation is driven by financially motivated spam. We're looking into disrupting the economics with ads policies like the one we announced earlier this week, and better ad farm detection.
- Listening. We will continue to work with journalists and others in the news industry to get their input, in particular, to better understand their fact checking systems and learn from them."
( from Mark Zuckerberg Facebook post; )
Check the account history of the source. Two red flags are: the number of posts and how long the account has been active. If it claims to be a well know source(like CNN or CBS) and only has a few posts in its history that is a clue. If it's a well know source and the account has only been active a short time that is another red flag.
Images of an event are often reused to deceive people. You can check if an image has been used before on a reverse image search service like TinEye.
So I Saw This Meme on the Internet…
How to evaluate political and current events news you see online
What did you see?
What should you look for?
Adapted with permission from Kyri Freeman, Barstow Community College Library