Facebook is one of the biggest social media platforms in the world. It has enormous potential in the spread of information. Unfortunately, its platform poses a danger when it is used to spread disinformation such as during the 2020 election process. A new report argues that Facebook could prevent 10 billion views of election disinformation. Here is an excerpt:
Facebook could have prevented some 10 billion views of toxic and misleading U.S. election-related content last year if it had taken earlier action, according to a new report released by online advocacy group Avaaz. The analysis, reported by Time magazine, found that the company’s decision to wait until October to change its algorithms to block out harmful election content allowed for a flood of misinformation in the months before the vote. Its findings are based on a study of the 100 most prominent pages that repeatedly shared misinformation on Facebook before November’s election. “The scary thing is that this is just for the top 100 pages—this is not the whole universe of misinformation,” says Fadi Quran, who worked on the report. “This doesn’t even include Facebook Groups, so the number is likely much bigger. We took a very, very conservative estimate in this case.” The report lays into Facebook for “creating the conditions that swept America down the dark path from election to insurrection.”
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