File picture:Reuters/Johanna Geron
File picture:Reuters/Johanna Geron

Facebook will label user content in bid to reduce misinformation

By Masabata Mkwananzi Time of article published Apr 13, 2021

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Social media giant Facebook has announced that it will start labelling posts from certain Pages on people’s News Feeds. Facebook is trying to reduce and help its users from separating satire from real news.

The company said in a tweet that it will start testing these labels in the US.

“Starting today in the US, we’re testing a way to give people more context about the Pages they see. We’ll gradually start applying labels including 'public official,' 'fan page' or 'satire page' to posts in News Feed, so people can better understand who they’re coming from.” The tweet reads.

Users will easily spot the new labels under Page names in grey text and when clicked it will offer more information as to why it was labelled ‘satire’ and the definition of ‘satire’ itself, the same information will be available with other labels such as ‘public official,’ and ‘fan pages.’

According to The Verge, Facebook tried to make the context of posts in the News Feed clearer. Last year back in June the company began labelling media outlets that are ‘wholly or partially under the editorial control of their government.’ Facebook argued that such outlets needed labels because “they combine the influence of a media organization with the strategic backing of a state, and we believe people should know if the news they read is coming from a publication that may be under the influence of a government.”

Facebook is not the only company to add labels to its pages. Youtube also did the same thing back in 2018 as it added labels to videos that were developed in part or in full by the public or government organisations.

Masabata Mkwanazi

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