In collaboration with Google and Facebook, several news organizations in France are seeking to fight the problem of fake news ahead of their elections that will be held in April and May 2017.
The initiative is being called “Cross Check”, and will see the social media and search majors work alongside Agence France-Presse and BFM TV, as well as leading newspapers Le Monde and L’Express, to quell the rise of fake news prior to the elections.
The fake news fiasco that hit the United States in the run-up to the U.S. presidential election 2016 has rattled the online world. At the time, both Facebook and Google said that they were working towards reducing the amount of fake content on both their platforms.
This move to help France is a follow-on to what Facebook started last month in Germany. Preparations are already underway for the parliamentary elections in September, when chancellor Angela Merkel will seek to be elected for a fourth term. Government officials have already voiced their concerns over online hate speech and fake news potentially impacting the outcome of the elections.
Google and Facebook are expected to work closely with news media houses in France to attempt to weed out fake news and false reports on both search results and Facebook posts.
It’s a massive and extremely difficult task, but Facebook has already said that it would work with Associated Press, Snopes and other entities to help them identify, flag and remove spurious reports, fake news and non-authentic or unverified content.
In addition, it said that users would find it much easier to flag fake content when they find it. These initiatives were announced for the United States, but will likely be a big part of their strategy against fake news in France and Germany as well.
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