Reuters: Facebook says it will act against ‘information operations’ using false accounts. “Facebook Inc acknowledged on Thursday that it has become a battleground for governments seeking to manipulate public opinion in other countries and outlined new measures it is taking to combat what it calls ‘information operations’ that go well beyond the phenomenon known as fake news.”
TechCrunch: Jimmy Wales’ Wikitribune to combat fake news with wiki-powered journalism. “With fake news continuing to dominate the discussion about the future of the media and role of social networks in spreading it, many in the tech world have tried to come up with ways to fight this new cancer. Various pronouncements have been made by Google, Facebook and Twitter about tweaking their algorithms. But it’s hard to get away from the fact that human beings are probably going to have to be involved somewhere along the line. Step forward a new project from Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.”
TechCrunch: Facebook shows Related Articles and fact checkers before you open links. “Facebook wants you to think about whether a headline is true and see other perspectives on the topic before you even read the article. In its next step against fake news, Facebook today begins testing a different version of its Related Articles widget that normally appears when you return to the News Feed after opening a link. Now Facebook will also show Related Articles including third-party fact checkers before you read an article about a topic that many people are discussing.”
Sixth Tone: How Western Fake News Took Over China’s Social Media. “While internet users in the Western world now stand a reduced chance of encountering the Daily Mail’s content, Chinese social media outlets — including microblogging site Weibo and social messaging app WeChat — are frequently abuzz with the tabloid’s stories. In fact, the social media feeds of millions of Chinese netizens are filled not only with translations of the Daily Mail’s stories, but also with a torrent of misinformation from the West’s now-ubiquitous fake news and conspiracy theory websites.”
TechCrunch: Facebook puts link to 10 tips for spotting ‘false news’ atop feed. “Today Facebook begins fighting misinformation with news literacy education, in addition to product features. This week, users in 14 countries, including the U.S., will see an alert above the News Feed several times over the next few days that links them to Facebook’s Help Center where they can read ‘Tips to Spot False News.’ Written while working with news standards nonprofit First Draft, these tips include being skeptical of sensational headlines and checking for phony URLs.”
Facebook still apparently has no problem with running ads containing links to fake news, so I’m not thrilled about this. See my December ResearchBuzz article, Why You Will Never Convince Me That Facebook Gives a Damn About Fake Ads and Fake News, and below, enjoy a couple of fake ads I’ve seen just in the last few days.
New Scientist: Sock puppet accounts unmasked by the way they write and post. “‘Sock puppets’ are the scourge of online discussion . Multiple accounts controlled by the same user can dominate comment forums and spread fake news. But now there’s a way to unmask the puppeteers. A study of nine websites that use comment service Disqus to let readers post responses to articles found that sock puppets can be identified based on their writing style, posting activity and relationship with other users.”
CNET: Google fights fake news in search with ‘fact check’ tags . “Google is bringing tools to fight fake news to its most important and iconic product: search. The tech giant said early Friday that it’s adding ‘fact check’ labels to some of the results in its search engine. So, if you search for something and a story from a credible fact-checking source like PolitiFact or Snopes comes up, those stories will get that label.”