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Facebook launches new education tool in hopes of curbing 'false' news

Facebook launches tool to help users spot false news

In the US, Facebook last month started labelling stories from fake news sites as "disputed", working with third-party organisations that have signed up to a code of principles published by the Poynter Institute's International Fact Checking Network (IFCN). When clicked, users will be able to view information straight from Facebook's Help Center providing tips for spotting fake news, such as confirming the source and the URL, and looking into whether other outlets have also covered the story. Beginning April 7th a new education tool will be rolling out to better inform Facebook users about misleading content.

It's a new "educational tool against misinformation".

The next few times people on Facebook from 14 countries log on to their accounts, they'll see a prompt at the top of their news feeds asking them to view tips on how to spot a false story.

The announcement of an educational tool to help Facebook users spot what the social network calls "false news" is the latest in a series of initiatives.

The tip sheet goes over information such as "What kinds of false content should I look for", "Why is it being spread?" and provides other information regarding where to locate correct, reliable information.

After initially downplaying Facebook's impact, Zuckerberg made a decision to rethink Facebook's responsibilities. The headlines of fake news stories are often catchy, and contain lots of capital letters and exclamation marks.

Look closely at the URL. If no other news source is reporting the same story, it may indicate that the story is false. You can do an internet search of the image to find out where it came from. The initial rollout will target the United Kingdom, the US, Germany, France, Italy, the Philippines, Indonesia, Taiwan, Myanmar, Brazil, Mexico, Columbia, Argentina, and Canada, but Facebook said it would also look at pushing it out globally. "We would like to get to as many countries as possible". The U.S. presidential campaign helped bring the problem to light, as articles with false information were being highlighted as featured articles by way of computerized algorithms due to the high volume of people sharing them.

Facebook suggests being skeptical about sensational-sounding headlines, checking for misspellings and awkward formatting, and spotting errors in web addresses to make sure a site isn't masquerading as a reputable news organization.