Facebook launches fake news and click bait purge in latest update

Facebook has begun a purge of click bait appearing on people’s news feeds as part of efforts to ensure fewer members are spammed.

The social networking platform has been hit by a slew of hoax news stories in recent years, designed to redirect traffic or simply stir up trouble; including fake news stories such as Sarah Palin joining Al Jazeera America and even scientists demonstrating irrefutable proof of the existence of Santa Claus.

Many are subsequently propagated by gullible users online as they share them with friends and family but the latest update to its news feed will ensure that such tall tales will carry a warning message stating ‘many people on Facebook have reported that this story contains false information’.

This follows an earlier update which allowed users to flag up dodgy content by reporting a story to the website as false. Such reports are now digested by a new algorithm to determine which posts should be slapped with a warning.

In a blog post Facebook explained: “Today’s update to News Feed reduces the distribution of posts that people have reported as hoaxes and adds an annotation to posts that have received many of these types of reports to warn others on Facebook.”

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