Why It’s Not Easy to Develop Fake-News Solutions

By now, we all know that Facebook’s algorithms are the ones controlling the news and updates you see on your Newsfeed. Most of us are also aware of the recent scandal Facebook has been through thanks to the spreading of fake news on the social media. And although developing fake-news solutions may seem like an easy task to an outsider, stopping fake news from spreading is anything but easy.
Alex Stamos, Facebook’s chief security officer who is handling the company’s investigation into Russia’s use of the social media platform during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, said that it’s very difficult to spot fake news and propaganda using only algorithms and other computer programs.
“Nobody of substance at the big companies thinks of algorithms as neutral,” said Stamos. “Nobody is aware of the risks.”
Because algorithms are made in the image of their creators (humans), they cannot be neutral. And because of that, to develop technical solutions to the fake news would mean silencing topics that Facebook thinks should be silenced.
Stamos describes this best by saying: “A lot of people aren’t thinking hard about the world they are asking (the tech industry) to build. When the gods wish to punish us, they answer our prayers.”

Phys.org (https://phys.org/news/2017-10-facebook-chief-dangers-fake-news-solutions.html)


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