Facebook employees form task force to battle fake news concern: Report

By Karthekayan Iyer | Published on 16 Nov 2016
Facebook employees form task force to battle fake news concern: Report

Facebook employees dismiss Mark Zuckerberg's notion of fake news being pretty crazy

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Facebook employees are forming an unofficial group (also known as task force) to tackle the ongoing the issue of fake news appearing on the world's biggest social media platform. Post Donald Trump's victory, there were reports which suggested Facebook influenced the election results.


Facebook's task force now aims to end all the buzz around fake news and the news feed helping Trump win the election. The task force includes employees from across the company, reports BuzzFeed News. These employees have rebutted Zuckerberg's statement which deemed fake news as a "pretty crazy idea."


“It’s not a crazy idea. What’s crazy is for him to come out and dismiss it like that, when he knows, and those of us at the company know, that fake news ran wild on our platform during the entire campaign season,” one Facebook employee, working in the social network’s engineering division told the BuzzFeed News. The taskforce is reportedly a group of 'more than dozens' of employees, who met twice in the last six days. The BuzzFeed News says these employees are meeting in secret in order to allow members to speak without fear from the senior management.


With fake news, Facebook has a serious problem up its sleeve that goes way back to the trending topics curated by human editors. The issue is such a big thing that the task force has received support for other employees in private online chats. Facebook's task force is reviewing whether the social network had devoted enough resources to verify user reports of fake news. The team is also figuring out whether it had used features to automatically scan the platform for offensive content.


"There is a lot more we could be doing using tools already built and in use across Facebook to stop other offensive or harmful content. We do a lot to stop people from posting nudity or violence, from automatically flagging certain sites to warning people who post content that doesn’t meet the community guidelines," BuzzFeed News quotes an employee as saying.


Facebook employees say the social media platform is not taking the reports of fake news as seriously as reports about other content violation. Facebook employees working in the task force say they don't want the site to help any political candidate by pushing fake or misleading news items.

Karthekayan Iyer

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