Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg Finally Details Fake News Countermeasures

Facebook Inc, facing withering criticism for failing to stem a flood of phony news articles in the run-up to the U.S. presidential election, is taking a series of steps to weed out hoaxes and other types of false information, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post Friday evening.

Facebook has long insisted that it is a technology company and not a publisher, and rejects the idea that it should be held responsible for the content that its users circulate on the platform. Just after the election, Zuckerberg said the notion that fake or misleading news on Facebook had helped swing the election to Donald Trump was a “crazy idea.”

Zuckerberg then said last Saturday that more than 99 percent of what people see on Facebook is authentic, calling “only a very small amount” fake news and hoaxes.

But in his Friday posting Zuckerberg struck a decidedly different tone. He said Facebook has been working on the issue of misinformation for a long time, calling the problem complex both technically and philosophically.

“While the percentage of misinformation is relatively small, we have much more work ahead on our roadmap,” Zuckerberg said.

He outlined a series of steps that were already underway, including greater use of automation to “detect what people will flag as false before they do it themselves.” 

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