Hunt for False News, an attempt by Facebook to be transparent about false news

Facebook has introduced a new series called The Hunt for False News in which the company is telling users what the Facebook team is doing about the false news that are spreading through the news feed.

Facebook’s Product Manager, Antonia Woodford published the first post about this series on Facebook NewsRoom in which she discusses three such false news that were circulating on Facebook before getting removed.

[Source: Facebook]
Out of the three stories, two were caught by Facebook and third-party checks while one story was missed. The main point of this series is to be transparent to the users about how these fake news spread around Facebook and as the US midterm elections are to be held next month, so in wake of the fake news which may spread, Facebook wants to alert its users.

The first news is about a CCTV footage shared by multiple accounts on Facebook and other socials media in which a man wearing a white robe and a headscarf spits in the face of a blonde woman who appears to be some kind of receptionist. The caption with the video was “Man from Saudi spits in the face of the poor receptionist at a Hospital in London then attacks other staff.”

After confirmed by an AFP report, the video was true, however, the caption was misleading and was an incident which occurred in a veterinary hospital in Kuwait in 2017.

The second story is about a Brazillian presidential candidate, Jair Bolsonaro was stabbed and a photo circulated on Facebook about a man with a caption that claimed the man in the photo was Bolsonaro’s attacker.

After being reviewed by Aos Fatos, it was found that the man wasn’t Bolsonaro’s attacker but the photo was from an entirely different event at Curitiba. Facebook then took action to remove that image from the News Feed of users in order to prevent misinformation.

The story is a claim about NASA which states that NASA was looking to compensate volunteers up to $100,000 to participate in 60-day “bed rest studies.”

This, however, was completely false and NASA didn’t pay anyone $100,000 to stay in bed.

Woodford told the users about all these misinformation but she didn’t mention anything whether the entire posts were removed completely or not.

[Source: Facebook]

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