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How Various Social Networks Plan To Stem The Flow Of Fake News/ Misinformation Content

Fake news is stealing the faith of people on social media. Thus, every social media platform is trying to put more authoritative content in front of the people

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Okay Google… search “meaning of fake news”. Fake news is the misinformation or a hoax spread via traditional print and broadcast news media or online social media. In simple words, fake news is like a communicable disease which spread rapidly from person to person. In spreading this hazardous disease, WhatsApp, Facebook, YouTube and many other social media platforms are the prime contributors. You must have come across messages like UNESCO declared 'Jan Gan Man' as the best national Anthem in the world, a worker injected HIV infected blood into Pepsi or Frooti and many more rumours spread across via WhatsApp. Recently, a post went viral about 6 people dying and 18 people injured in a bus accident on Tanakpur- Lohaghat. Later, the post proved to be dead wrong.

Fake news is stealing the faith of people on social media. Thus, every social media platform is trying to put more authoritative content in front of the people. YouTube, on one hand, is modifying its recommendation engine and WhatsApp, on the other hand, is tweaking different policies. According to the sources, YouTube is coming up with a new information panel that will appear at the top of search results around developing news story. WhatsApp is also up with awards for research in the spread of misinformation. The popular messaging app is looking forward to work with leading academic experts to learn more about how people misuse the online platform for spreading rumours.

Facebook continues updating its algorithm to prevent the platform from the web of fake information. Facebook introduced three News Feed publisher principles which support authentic content, meaningful and informative stories and safe and respectful behaviour. According to Facebook, ‘universal signals’ have been added which will help to spot fake news.

Reportedly, Twitter suspended over 70 million fake and bots account in order to maintain its originality. Twitter is now more focused on the user safety and protection. WhatsApp is also playing its part to fight misinformation. Recently, the company announced commission awards for researchers who are interested in investigating on false news spread through the app.

Apart from this, the circulation of fake news can be limited by the individual support. Now here one important question arises, how to spot the fake news? Learn this answer on your three fingers!

  1. Questioning the source: You can ask for a reference link from the source in case of any doubt regarding the news
  2. Seek for confirmation: Check the information in the most trusted source and mainstream media. Mainstream media is answerable to the public
  3. Third-party sites like Snopes and Politifact are helpful

At last, don’t be like a ‘Blind Bird’ and trust everything you see on the internet. Question your senses and be your own journalist.