The World Health Organization called this phenomenon the “information epidemic”. And given the fact that it was a question of clinically unconfirmed advice on the treatment of COVID-19, and of calls for protests against quarantine, such an epidemic is no less dangerous.
I think this topic is important, because I work on social networks every day. Because the duty of my work is also the introduction of social networks. My mentor is quite old and poorly versed in SMM, so during my ESK, I’ll leave my social network. It seems to me that it is important to understand and cure the fake in the flow of information. There are so many, and you don’t have time to read one piece of news, as 5 new ones come out. This is very difficult and great stress. I decided to talk about the fight against fake news. Because during my project, people come to the bureau, and in the corridors I hear such stupid polemics that I want to cry. So read this, and try not to make the mistakes of the "Boomer" generation.
Technical giants began to develop their own ways of identifying and removing fakes on the network: Facebook blocked posts with inappropriate content, and Twitter designated messages as “contradictory” or “misleading”. And despite all the efforts, the anti-disinformation campaign cannot be called successful, according to a June 2 report from the British Digital Hate Center (CCDH). After all, thousands of fake messages are still online, visible to everyone. Why did this happen, and did we begin to more carefully check the information during the pandemic?
Social networks guard the truth
“We help millions of people stay connected, and now we will jointly counteract the deception and intentional dissemination of false information about the coronavirus, post reliable content on social networks, and provide important new information from governments around the world,” the joint statement said Facebook , Twitter, Google, YouTube, Reddit, Microsoft and its affiliate LinkedIn.
The most active participants in this mission were Facebook and Twitter. At that time, Twitter had already introduced tagging messages with conflicting content. And Facebook began to delete posts with conspiracy theories regarding the coronavirus (one of the most popular is that 5G mobile connection causes the coronavirus). In return, he provided the opportunity to advertise for free at the World Health Organization.
In mid-May, Facebook shared the first successes of its struggle: in a month, the social network found and left warning notes about false information for 50 million posts about COVID-19. The company emphasized that the warning about fakes still works: according to them, in 95% of cases, people do not click on a post with a label.
However, experts on digital security at the British Center for Combating Digital Hate say that this is too optimistic. They conducted their own experiment to track the "fate" of fake news on social networks: from late April to late May, ten volunteers from the UK, Ireland and Romania found messages on social networks like the pseudo-treatment of COVID-19 with aspirin dissolved in hot water and dietary supplements with zinc and vitamins C and D.
According to the results of the study, it turned out that Facebook deleted 10% of the hundreds of fake messages and 2% designated as false. Instagram responded to 10% of user-submitted complaints about fake content. And Twitter drew attention to only 3% of all revised false messages.
In general, 90% of fake posts on social networks remained visible to other users. On Facebook, this result was called “non-representative,” and on Twitter it was explained by the peculiarities of selecting information - the social network labels mainly such messages where there are direct calls to action (say, to protest) and reacts less effectively to simply incomplete and contradictory information.
Seeing the information in my article, you can see how fake news is daily coming to the network. Therefore, be careful when choosing information, and see what you read.