Third-party fact checking for Facebook South Africa

Facebook has announced the implementation of third-party fact checking for news and information in South Africa.

This new security feature is meant to “help assess the accuracy of news in South Africa, and reduce the spread of misinformation, whilst improving the quality of news people find” on the social media platform, the company explains in an announcement.

The company is working alongside certified fact-checking organisations AfricaCheck and AFP.

“Local articles will be fact-checked alongside the verification of photos and videos. If one of our fact-checking partners identifies a story as false, Facebook will show it lower in News Feed, significantly reducing its distribution,” the announcement explains.

The reduction of this distribution averages at 80% according to a statement from SADC Facebook Public Policy Manager Emilar Gandhi.

“Admins and people on Facebook will also receive notifications if they try to share a story or have shared one in the past that’s been determined to be false, empowering people to decide for themselves what to read, trust, and share,” she explains.

Facebook reminds that such a programme relies on feedback from users to work effectively.

Feature Image: Facebook

Shereesa Moodley


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