Facebook is taking the fight against fake news to the related articles section by updating the related articles algorithm which is expected to detect whether an article contains fake news or note. This means based on comments and reports from users, the article will then be subjected to scrutiny by fact checkers outside Facebook.
Once these individuals ascertain the true story based on their research of course, Facebook will then go ahead and put their story I the related section even before the link that provided the fake news in the first place.
The other thing is that a link that has been widely reported as reporting fake news will no longer be listed under related articles. By degrading these links, they won’t be able to spread “fake news” further.
But getting that number of fact checkers globally will prove difficulty even for Facebook which is why they are rolling out the feature in select countries where it already has some form of partnership with these fact checkers. As of today, the feature will only be available in the US, France, Germany and the Netherlands with more countries expected to make the list as time goes on.
Many blamed the outcome of the US presidential elections partly on fake news and as you might expect, Facebook was at the centre of that debate. The story is the same in Germany where the government came out against fake news in its elections and just before the French elections, Google and Facebook announced a fact checking initiative to stem the flow of fake news.
With billions of people relying on social media to get their daily news dose, its important that platforms like Facebook which dominate much of this traffic gets it right with respect to the quality of news people get.