Facebook vows to stem anti-vaccine conspiracy theories

Pearl Mccarthy
March 10, 2019

Facebook said it is also thinking about promoting information from expert organizations about vaccines at the top of results for related searches - a step beyond its usual tactic of de-ranking misinformation.

The company has made a decision to take action against accounts which are promoting vaccine hoaxes that have been publicly identified by the World Health Organisation and Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, US.

It's important to note that Facebook isn't hiding or deleting individual anti-vaccination posts; it is only targeting groups, Pages, and ads.

Hiding content that contains misinformation about vaccines on Instagram Explore or hashtag pages.

The company is also going to reject ads that include misinformation, and it will completely disable an ad account if they continue to advertise further misinformation. The organizations have identified vaccine hoaxes in the past, and Facebook will take action against any that appear on the platform.

Facebook will now de-prioritize medical myths across the platform, taking action against verifiable vaccine hoaxes, the company said.

Bickert said the company is also "exploring ways to share educational information about vaccines", possibly by adding educational information to inaccurate posts.

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Others believe Facebook is striking the right balance.

One group of scientists recently published a study that found the majority of the most-viewed health stories on Facebook in 2018 were downright fake or contained significant amounts of misleading information.

This is part of Facebook's expanded effort to boost, primarily, election security, and ensure political groups are not working to manipulate voters through Facebook. Facebook is attempting to reduce the number of people who see the content, she said, without censoring it outright. In the letter, he passed remarks that Facebook and Instagram, are "surfacing and recommending messages" that demoralize children's vaccination. While some of them are already live, some remain in testing phases.

Facebook took several steps a year ago to combat the issue of "fake news" in India and other countries. "There's a distinction between allowing people to express their opinions about whether or not they're going to vaccinate their children versus actual hoaxes that the World Health Organization and the CDC have said aren't true".

"Yes", Lindenberger replied. "Mainly Facebook".

As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before.

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