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Facebook Is Finally Automating Its Fake News Fight (a Little)

August 3, 2017

Ever since Facebook’s misinformation problem was called out in the wake of the 2016 presidential election, the social network has been cautious about solving the problem. The extent of its response to date: awareness raising and third-party fact-checkers to flag questionable content. Today, though, the company has announced that it will start to use AI to detect misleading articles. Its algorithms will proactively search out fake content, then send what it finds to fact-checkers, who will continue to alert users to questionable veracity by adding warnings beneath an article in feeds. It’s worth noting that it’s still a long way from using AI to stop the spread of fake news—but then, that notion makes Mark Zuckerberg feel deeply uncomfortable. In the past, he’s called the concept of filtering out fake news “complex, both technically and philosophically,” adding that Facebook must “be extremely cautious about becoming arbiters of truth.” Good thing it still isn't, then.

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