Facebook Will Hide U.K. Election Posts Flagged by Fact-Checkers Behind Grey Screen

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Facebook will hide posts related to the upcoming elections in the U.K. that have been rated as illegal, false or partly false by its third-party fact-checkers behind a grey screen.

Product manager, misinformation Antonia Woodford detailed the new feature in a Newsroom post that also featured details on steps the social network has already put in place to protect the election, from: head of U.K. public policy Rebecca Stimson; head of cybersecurity policy Nathaniel Gleicher; director of product, business integrity Rob Leathern; and politics and government outreach manager, U.K. Ella Fallows.

Woodford said a grey screen will appear over posts that third-party fact-checkers determine to be illegal, false or partly false, containing a “false information” label and links to articles from fact-checkers debunking the claims within those posts.

She wrote, “These clearer labels are what people have told us they want, what they have told us they expect Facebook to do and what experts tell us is the right tactic for combating misinformation.”

Woodford said all of Facebook’s third-party fact-checking partners are accredited by the International Fact-Checking Network, adding that specifically in the U.K., it works with Full Fact and FactCheckNI.

She also revealed that Facebook entered into a partnership with the International Fact-Checking Network last week to create the Fact-Checking Innovation Initiative, which will fund innovation projects, new formats and technologies to help benefit the broader fact-checking ecosystem.

Woodford wrote, “We are investing $500,000 into this new initiative, where organizations can submit applications for projects to improve fact-checkers’ scale and efficiency, increase the reach of fact-checks to empower more people with reliable information, build new tools to help combat misinformation and encourage newsrooms to collaborate in fact-checking efforts. Anyone from the U.K. can be a part of this new initiative.”

The U.K. general election is set for Thursday, Dec. 12.

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