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Facebook discards controversial fake news warning flags

Instead, the social media giant will use its Related Articles tool to fight misinformation in its News Feed

IANS  |  San Francisco 

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Photo: Shutterstock

In yet another attempt to flush out from its platform, has announced that it will no longer use Disputed Flags (red-warning icons) to identify false

Instead, the will use its Related Articles tool to fight misinformation in its Feed.

"Instead of Disputed Flags, we'll use Related Articles to help give people more context about the story," Tessa Lyons, at Facebook, wrote in a blog post on Friday.

Academic research on correcting misinformation has shown that putting a strong image, like a red flag, next to an article may actually entrench deeply held beliefs.

"Related Articles, by contrast, are simply designed to give more context, which our research has shown is a more effective way to help people get to the facts," said.

also announced to start a new initiative to better understand how people decide whether information is accurate or not based on the sources they depend upon.

"This will not directly impact Feed in the near term.

However, it may help us better measure our success in improving the quality of information on over time," the company said.

"Demoting false (as identified by fact-checkers) is one of our best weapons because demoted articles typically lose 80 per cent of their traffic.

"This destroys the economic incentives spammers and troll farms have to generate these articles in the first place," posted.

In their bid to fight and help readers identify trustworthy sources, Facebook, Google, and several have joined the non-partisan "The Trust Project".

"The Trust Project" is led by award-winning of Santa Clara University's Markkula Centre for Applied Ethics.

As part of the initiative, an will appear next to articles in Feed. When you click on the icon, you can read information on the organisations' ethics and other standards, the journalists' backgrounds, and how they do their work.

First Published: Fri, December 22 2017. 10:02 IST
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