Working to Stop Misinformation and False News

By Adam Mosseri, VP, News Feed

We know people want to see accurate information on Facebook – and so do we.

False news is harmful to our community, it makes the world less informed, and it erodes trust. It’s not a new phenomenon, and all of us — tech companies, media companies, newsrooms, teachers — have a responsibility to do our part in addressing it. At Facebook, we’re working to fight the spread of false news in three key areas:

Disrupting Economic Incentives

When it comes to fighting false news, one of the most effective approaches is removing the economic incentives for traffickers of misinformation. We’ve found that a lot of fake news is financially motivated. These spammers make money by masquerading as legitimate news publishers and posting hoaxes that get people to visit their sites, which are often mostly ads.

Some of the steps we’re taking include:

Building New Products

We’re building, testing and iterating on new products to identify and limit the spread of false news. We cannot become arbiters of truth ourselves — it’s not feasible given our scale, and it’s not our role. Instead, we’re working on better ways to hear from our community and work with third parties to identify false news and prevent it from spreading on our platform.

Some of the work includes:

Helping People Make More Informed Decisions

Though we’re committed to doing everything we can to reduce the spread of false news to as close to zero as possible, we also need to make sure we take steps to address the problem when people do encounter hoaxes. To that end, we’re exploring ways to give people more context about stories so they can make more informed decisions about what to read, trust and share and ways to give people access to more perspectives about the topics that they’re reading.

Some of the work we’ve been focused on includes:

We need to work across industries to help solve this problem: technology companies, media companies, educational organizations and our own community can come together to help curb the spread of misinformation and false news. By focusing on the three key areas outlined above, we hope we will make progress toward limiting the spread of false news — and toward building a more informed community on Facebook.