Facebook launches 3rd-party fact-check program in Singapore

(AP file photo)
(AP file photo)

SINGAPORE — News stories deemed false or inaccurate will now appear lower in the news feed of Facebook users in Singapore.

This comes after the social media giant announced on Thursday (2 May) that it has expanded its third-party fact-checking programme in the Asia-Pacific region to Singapore, in a bid to reduce the spread of misinformation and improve the quality of news online.

It said in a media statement that it will launch the program in partnership with international news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP), which has been certified by the Poynter Institute’s International Fact Checking Network.

Reviewing and rating accuracy of news stories

AFP will review and rate the accuracy of news stories on Facebook, including photos and videos. When the fact-checkers rate a story as false, it will appear lower in the news feed, significantly reducing its distribution.

According to AFP’s Asia fact check editor Karl Malakunas, the agency has specific fact-checking operations in more than 20 countries, including Indonesia, the Philippines, India, Pakistan and Australia.

Anjali Kapoor, news partnership director (Asia-Pacific) at Facebook, said, “We know that people want to see accurate information on Facebook ... We believe that with this fact-checking programme, we can help build a more informed community in Singapore and look forward to exploring more opportunities to expand this programme locally.”

Notifications if false news is shared

Facebook will also show articles written by fact-checkers about a piece of content immediately below the story in the news feed. Page administrators and users will also receive notifications if they try to share a post that has been determined to be false.

Facebook started the third-party fact-checking programme in December 2016 and now includes over 50 partners, including AFP.

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