Facebook Starts Warning Users Before Sharing COVID-19 Links to Combat Misinformation


Facebook is rolling out a new notification screen globally that will give users more context about the COVID-19 related articles they share on the social network. The notification will inform users when the article was first shared and its source. This is a part of Facebook’s larger efforts to combat rampant misinformation around novel coronavirus. The notification will also direct people to Facebook’s COVID-19 Information Center, where they can access credible information about the virus from global health authorities.

Facebook said in a blog post that content posted by government health authorities and recognised global health organisations like the World Health Organization would be exempt from this notification feature, so that the spread of information from credible health authorities isn’t slowed down.

Facebook said that the aim was to make sure that people have the context they needed to make informed decisions about what to share on the social networking platform about COVID-19. The notification, according to Facebook, would help people understand the recency and source of the content before they share it. Facebook announced the feature last month and now, it has been made available to everyone.

This feature is a part of measures being taken by Facebook to battle misinformation about COVID-19. According to data released earlier this week, Facebook said it removed seven million posts during the second quarter for sharing false information about novel coronavirus, including content that promoted fake preventative measures and exaggerated cures. In a first, Facebook took down a post by US President Donald Trump for violating its rules against misinformation about coronavirus.

This feature is likely rolling out in stages and isn’t available for us yet. Let us know in comments below if you see a notification screen with context about an article link related to COVID-19 while sharing it on Facebook.


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