Facebook cracks down on fake news in South Africa
5 October 2018
Facebook has hired Africa Check and AFP to try to crack down on the sharing of fake news on the social media platform in South Africa.
At a press conference at the company’s offices in Johannesburg on Thursday, the company – which has come under severe criticism this year, particularly in the US, for carrying false information on its platform – said it is aiming to reduce the spread of misinformation in South Africa.
Africa Check is an independent fact-checking organisation, while AFP is a new organisation. “Both are part of a global effort of fact-checking organisations, certified by the non-partisan International Fact-Checking Network,” the social network company said in a statement.
We’re committed to South Africa and take our responsibility seriously in tackling the spread of false news
It said its new fact-checking programme relies on feedback from its users, as one of many signals it uses to raise potentially false stories to fact-checkers for review.
“Local articles will be fact-checked alongside the verification of photos and videos. If one of our fact-checking partners identifies a story as false, Facebook will show it lower in News Feed, significantly reducing its distribution.”