Facebook Fake news — potential solution ?
I read Walt Mossberg suggestions for Facebook to attack the fake news problem. And I believe for some of the suggestions we can build on existing solutions tested out by other companies.
Original article can be found here & relevant excerpt below.
Here are a few guidelines, Facebook.
- Assertions by actual people, even if they are false, aren’t fake news. People say and believe all kinds of things. So, even if they don’t believe in the moon landings, and form a Facebook group of like-minded others, that’s not fake news.
- Opinions aren’t fake news. The existence of the new MacBook Pro is an indisputable fact, as are its specs, design, and price. Yet some might love it and others might hate it. The same goes for Donald Trump’s promise to build a border wall and for the Gilmore Girls revival. But neither the lovers nor the haters are creating fake news.
- Differing interpretations aren’t fake news. Millions may have seen the video of a football play, from multiple angles. So there’s a real, actual fact there. I might think there was pass interference, and somebody else might not, but even if the replay shows there was a proper penalty, the other guy has a right to stick to his guns.
- Sensational “news stories” with little or no reporting that seem opportune, and aren’t quickly replicated or even repeated with credit by reputable news sources, are probably fake news. You have the means to investigate this. It might be a new, legit, one-person blog that stumbled onto a great scoop, but it’s likelier to be a cash-driven Macedonian teenage fake news poster. How could you not have questioned one of the Macedonian “stories” that had the Pope endorsing a US presidential candidate? Did you think the Vatican Radio Facebook page would miss that?
- Sketchy personal accounts that give every appearance of falsehood and spread fake news (see number 4) were probably established for that very purpose. You know who they are. Humans can often spot them, even if algorithms can’t. You can bar them.
For 4 & 5 — LinkedIn has been using ways to identify existing LinkedIn users in news stories and tagging them — LinkedIN Mentioned feature. This links the news story to the individual and their followers. Facebook could do the same for every news story match existing facebook users (including valudated users). It already has ~2 billion to choose from! The user who is referred in the story can ‘validate’ the story. And validated stores should feature higher in Facebook’s ‘trending stories’ algorithms. Ofcourse an upvote from user’s friends should also be rank the story higher.