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  • Geebo 10:00 am on April 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , fake news   

    Facebook and craigslist team up to fight fake news, not notice irony 

    Facebook and craigslist team up to fight fake news, not notice irony

    Since the 2016 Presidential Election, ‘fake news’ has been the story that’s refused to die with Facebook being ground zero for most fake stories that are perpetrated on the internet. In the past Facebook has taken steps to combat this problem without really fixing anything in our opinion. Now Facebook must be absolutely serious about the problem because they’ve teamed up with that bastion of truth and integrity, craigslist. Sarcasm fully intended, by the way.

    While we’ve been over this before, but it bears repeating. With Facebook, anyone can post just about anything no matter how libelous it may be, pay to get the story boosted, then when the story turns out to be blatantly false, it takes nothing short than an act of God to get the story removed. As for craigslist, you can post an ad for just about anything including, but not limited to, revenge ads soliciting the sexual assault of just about any person you feel has wronged you. That’s not including the paranoid, racist and otherwise hate-filled scribes that inhabit the rants and raves section.

    Both sites, and their founders by extension, are acting like they’re standing on some kind of moral high ground. In reality the high ground their standing on is the mountain of lies perpetrated by their users and encouraged by the sites themselves.

     
  • Geebo 10:57 am on January 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cnn, fake news, fallout,   

    CNN uses video game footage to portray Russian hackers 

    CNN uses video game footage to portray Russian hackers

    As we’ve shown on this blog, one of the hot topics of 2016 was the tide of fake news that plagued the internet at large. What makes the fake news so acceptable these days is when cable news channels inadvertently engage in it.

    Recently, CNN was discussing the spate of news regarding so-called Russian hackers. In order to portray the alleged hacking CNN used a graphic of a green computer screen that appeared straight out of the early 80s. The problem was that the graphic CNN used was actually a clip from the video game Fallout 4.

    For those of you unfamiliar with the Fallout franchise it’s a series of games that take place in the alternate history of a post-apocalyptic 22nd century. For some reason in this alternate timeline, computer science never progressed past the 1980s. Throughout the game are these ancient looking computer terminals that the player has to ‘hack’ in order to open locked doors. The hacking consists of guessing already displayed passwords.

    So why is this a big deal? Well, how can we dismiss fake and misleading news when supposed legitimate news outlets are seen making preventable gaffes like this?

     
  • Geebo 1:24 pm on December 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , fake news, safety check   

    Fake news story triggers Facebook’s safety check 

    Fake news story triggers Facebook's safety check

    While the internet has dubbed 2016 the year that killed celebrities, it’s also been the year of fake news and in many ways Facebook has taken a brunt of the blame for the spreading of said untrue news.

    Facebook has grabbed one last possible fake news headline of 2016 as a fake news story has triggered their safety check. On the 27th the safety check was triggered in Thailand after a year old story about an explosion in Bangkok started trending. Facebook has denied the gaffe stating the safety check was triggered after someone threw fireworks at a government building.

    This is what happens when we rely on one place for all of our news and the ‘news’ is spread by anybody that can post anything and call it news. Maybe if we stepped out of Facebook every once in a while the fake news problem wouldn’t be a problem at all. The internet is a large and wonderful place and is full of some great news sources that report actual news. Even if a prison is comfortable and welcoming place like Facebook, it’s still a prison.

     
  • Geebo 12:08 pm on December 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , fake news   

    Facebook’s fighting fake news again 

    Facebook's fighting fake news again

    It feels like old home week again when it comes to the news. First we had yet another Yahoo hack and now Facebook is implementing new measures to fight fake news, again. This time they mean it.

    According to reports, Facebook is testing new tools for reporting fake news. It’s basically the same tools they have for reporting spam. When some users click the little down arrow that comes with most news stories on Facebook, they’ll be able to flag the story as false or misleading. This is said to trigger a review process that could end up have the story labeled as misleading or disputed.

    While it sounds great in theory, I’m sure there’s no way that the system could be abused. That was sarcasm by the way. This system could remind someone of the ‘community policing’ touted by a certain less than scrupulous classifieds site. While it was originally intended to report scammers and illegal ads, it’s since deteriorated into a tool for petty squabbles and trolling.

    This doesn’t even take into account that Facebook takes money from just about anyone in order to ‘boost’ their post or news article. It almost seems a conflict of interest for Facebook to rake in all this cash while claiming to fight fake news when anyone can pay to be featured.

    It seems like Facebook is trying to be both the cause of and the solution to fake news but logic dictates it can be only one of them.

     
  • Geebo 10:56 am on December 1, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , fake news,   

    Fake news is a problem, but is it Facebook’s problem? 

    Fake news is a problem, bus is it Facebook's problem?

    A lot has been made about Facebook and its problem with fake news articles appearing on its social network. We even started discussing this back in August. Ever since Facebook eliminated its human curation staff the site seems to have flooded over night with fake or misleading headlines.

    In a blog post on Quartz, they discuss a study that shows that a majority of traffic to these fake, or what they call hyperpartisan news sites, comes from Facebook. As you may have surmised, hyperpartisan news sites are specifically designed to garner traffic from members of whatever political party they tend to represent For example, a site called ‘Occupy Democrats’ gets almost 80% of traffic from Facebook alone while the New York times only gets 11%.

    While Facebook’s former curation team would have prevented stories like this from ending up in their trending topics, it’s ultimately up to the Facebook user who shares and spreads this disinformation or hyperbole. Again, there are too many people on Facebook and the internet in general, who are too eager to share articles that reinforce their confirmation bias no matter how outlandish the premise of the story may be.

    While Facebook’s fake news quandary is indeed a problem, ultimately it’s not really Facebook’s problem. As a wise man once said “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

     
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