Fight against misinformation goes wrong as Facebook wrongly blocks links; investigations underway

Fight against misinformation goes wrong as Facebook wrongly blocks links; investigations underway

- Facebook is in the process of unblocking links previously deemed as leading to fake news about the coronavirus

- The company implemented measures to rid its platform of fake news but appears to have eliminated legitimate links as well

- It explained that the situation was a result of a bug in the anti-spam system

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Facebook has admitted that its campaign to rid its platform of fake news related to the coronavirus led to the blocking of legitimate links.

According to Facebook’s Guy Rosen, the act was a result of a bug in the anti-spam system and is not in any way related to the company’s content moderator workforce.

He added that measures are currently underway to fix the errors and return all legitimate posts that were affected.

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The assurance, per a techcrunch report, comes after Facebook’s platform suffered from the effects of a bug in its News Feed spam filter.

This led to the blocking of Uniform Resource Locators (URLs) of authentic websites such as Medium, Buzzfeed and USA Today from being shared as posts or comments.

In a bid to eliminate misinformation, Facebook blocked the sharing of coronavirus-related content but some unrelated links were not allowed through as a result.

A few days ago, the company sent its content moderators home and announced that it would rely more on Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems in the future, but admitted that there was a greater likelihood of mistakes.

Some users received notifications such as “your post goes against our Community Standards on spam” after they shared some links on the website.

Added to the message was “No one else can see your post. We have these standards to prevent things like false advertising, fraud and security breaches.”

Meanwhile, Facebook has indicated its readiness to ban adverts that promise cures for the coronavirus.

The online company stated that adverts that “create a sense of urgency” around the virus would be banned.

YEN.com.gh understands that Facebook, like other platforms, has recorded a series of activities, such as misinformation and fear-mongering, relating to the outbreak of the virus.

It revealed that it would take down false posts about the virus if people are placed in risky situations as a result.

The measures come in the wake of increased reports about the coronavirus that has infected thousands of people and led to several deaths.

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