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Facebook ties up with BOOM to start pilot against fake news in Karnataka

Assembly elections in Karnataka will be held on May 12

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Facebook

Social networking giant is introducing a third-party fact-checking programme in India to combat the spread of "false news" on its platform, starting with a pilot in Karnataka, which goes to polls next month.

said it has partnered with BOOM, an independent digital journalism initiative certified through the International Fact-Checking Network, for a pilot in Karnataka.

Assembly elections in Karnataka will be held on May 12.

In a blogpost today, the US social networking giant said the programme in India aims "to fight the spread of false on our platform".

will review English language stories flagged on Facebook, check facts, and rate their accuracy, it said.

is running similar initiatives in France, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, Mexico, Indonesia, the Philippines and the US.

Over the last few weeks, has drawn intense criticism from users and governments globally over a number of issues, ranging from false on the platform to information of over 80 million users being mined by data analytics and political consulting firm,

The Indian government had also questioned both the on the impact of the data breach. had admitted that nearly 5.62 lakh people in India were "potentially affected" by the incident.

Testifying before the US Congress, CEO had said his organisation was committed to ensure integrity of elections across the world, including India.

In its blogpost, the company said it believes that "once a story is rated as false, we have been able to reduce its distribution by 80 per cent, and thereby, improve accuracy of information on and reduce misinformation".

has already stated that it will use reports from community along with other signals to send stories to fact-checking organisations.

"We are beginning small and know it is important to learn from this test and listen to our community as we continue to update ways for people to understand what might be false in their Feed," it said.

Detailing out the process, said after a story is rated as false by the fact-checker, it will figure lower in Feed, "significantly reducing its distribution".

"This in turn stops the hoax from spreading and reduces the number of people who see it. Pages and domains that repeatedly share false will also see their distribution reduced and their ability to monetise and advertise removed," it said.

This, said, will help curb the spread of "financially motivated false news".

"We also want to empower people to decide for themselves what to read, trust, and share by providing the community with more information and control... If third-party fact-checkers write articles debunking a false story, we'll show it in Related Articles immediately below the story in Feed," said.

will also send people and Page administrators notifications if they try to share a story or have shared one in the past that has been determined to be false.

"While third party fact checking is part of our ongoing efforts to combat spread of false news, we are working hard to improve the accuracy of information on in various ways," it added.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, April 17 2018. 00:50 IST
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