Facebook Tests Out Fake News Filter in Germany Following Government Threats [VIDEO]

17 January 2017, 6:41 am EST By Charles Lim Mobile & Apps
Facebook to test out its new fake news filter in Germany.  ( Photo illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images )

Late last year, the German government announced their plans of passing a new law that would fine Facebook $535,000 if it failed to remove any fake news posts within 24 hours. The move was likely a way to avoid the same problems that were caused by the fake news during the recently held United States Presidential Elections. While it may not necessarily be a direct cause, Facebook has now announced that they will be testing out their new fake news filtering system in Germany this week.

Facebook has not mentioned specifically whether the move was a direct response to Germany's threats, but the company has mentioned that Germany is just the first of many in their plans to introduce the filter to other countries. The filtering system essentially allows users to report any news posts that they think are fake or misleading. German users should be getting an option to report any post as early as now.

Any post that is flagged by a user as a fake will then be sent to the Correctiv, a non-profit fact-checking organization that follows the Poynter's International Fact Checking Code of Principles. If the organization finds the post or news to be indeed fake, the post itself will then be removed as a priority on Facebook user's news feeds. Reporters of the alleged fake news will also be getting a link to an article that explains more about fake news.

According to a report from Financial Times, the flagged fake news can still be shared on the platform, but they will now be coming with a warning that indicates that the news reports has been flagged as being fake news. A Facebook spokesperson has also revealed that the company is now currently focusing on Germany, but it is also planning out where they will be rolling out the feature next. The release of the feature in Germany is reportedly also a preventive measure for any fake news-related issues that might occur as the country prepares for its own elections this September.

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