Bloomberg Law: ABA Creates Fact Checker Website For Legal Issues in the News. “The American Bar Association is launching a new website in the hopes of becoming the authoritative source on legal facts in the news. The site… aims to be a source for journalists and the general public whenever misrepresentations about existing laws are made in the public discourse.”
Mozilla Blog: The Mozilla Information Trust Initiative: Building a movement to fight misinformation online. “Today, we are announcing the Mozilla Information Trust Initiative (MITI)—a comprehensive effort to keep the Internet credible and healthy. Mozilla is developing products, research, and communities to battle information pollution and so-called ‘fake news’ online. And we’re seeking partners and allies to help us do so.”
MIT Technology Review: First Evidence That Social Bots Play a Major Role in Spreading Fake News. “Fake news and the way it spreads on social media is emerging as one of the great threats to modern society. In recent times, fake news has been used to manipulate stock markets, make people choose dangerous health-care options, and manipulate elections, including last year’s presidential election in the U.S. Clearly, there is an urgent need for a way to limit the diffusion of fake news. And that raises an important question: how does fake news spread in the first place?”
TechCrunch: Facebook fights fake news with links to other angles. “Facebook will become the suggester of perspective to avoid being the ‘arbiter of truth’. It’s rolling out ‘Related Articles’ that appear below news links to stories lots of people are posting about on Facebook, or that are suspected to be false news and have been externally fact checked by Facebook’s partners. “
University of Arizona: UA Report Examines Fake News and How to Stop It. “The report, ‘Identifying and Countering Fake News’ (PDF), identifies the distinct types of fake news: hoaxes, propaganda, trolling and satire, along with the motivations behind them. It also proposes a set of model solutions to reduce production and dissemination of fake news.” The 33-page report is free and available at the link.
TechCrunch: Facebook fights fake news spread via modified link previews. “Until now, any Facebook Page that posted a link could change the headline, body text and image that appeared in the News Feed preview. That allowed fake news distributors to bait-and-switch readers into visiting articles they didn’t expect, or make it look like legitimate news publishers were posting inflammatory or false headlines. But it also let real news outlets A/B test link previews, tailor content to different audiences and update previews as news stories evolved.”
Washington Post: Spreading fake news becomes standard practice for governments across the world. “Campaigns to manipulate public opinion through false or misleading social media postings have become standard political practice across much of the world, with information ministries, specialized military units and political operatives shaping the flow of information in dozens of countries, a British research group reported Monday…. Though most social media platforms are designed and run by corporations based the United States, the platforms are infiltrated almost immediately upon their release to the public by a range of international actors skilled at using information to advance political agendas, within their own countries and beyond, said the researchers from Oxford University’s Computational Propaganda Research Project.”