Facebook to block pages that link to fake news

This article is more than 12 months old

SAN FRANCISCO Facebook on Monday said pages that often link to bogus articles will no longer be able to advertise on the leading online social network.

This is Facebook's latest move in its war against fake news.

Facebook product managers Tessa Lyons and Satwik Shukla said in a blog post: "This update will help to reduce the distribution of false news, which will keep pages that spread false news from making money."

Facebook already does not allow advertisements that link articles determined to be false by third-party fact-checkers.

"False news is harmful to our community," Ms Lyons and Mr Shukla said.

"It makes the world less informed and erodes trust."

Fake news became a serious issue in last year's US election campaign, when clearly fraudulent reports circulated on social media, swaying some voters.

Concerns have since been raised about hoaxes and misinformation affecting elections in Europe this year, with investigations showing how "click farms" generate revenue from online advertising using made-up news stories.

"We have found instances of pages using Facebook ads to build their audiences in order to distribute false news more broadly," Ms Lyons and Mr Shukla said.

Facebook and Google have been working to curtail, or at least flag, stories crafted to deceive instead of enlighten.

Google earlier this year added a fact-checking tag to search results globally, its latest initiative to help curb the spread of misinformation. - AFP

facebooksocial mediamedia