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Home / US / Facebook extends the ban on electoral fraud to involve lies about voting requirements

Facebook extends the ban on electoral fraud to involve lies about voting requirements



Photo: Andrew Harnik (AP)

Facebook prohibits the dissemination of false information on voting needs and will review "factual reports of violence or long queues at polling stations" as part of preparations for the 2018 midterm elections Reuters reported on Monday [19659003] Facebook's general policy is not to delete fake or misleading information circulating on the platform in order to invite partisan outrage and generally reluctant to ban content that has no incitement but methods such as removing pages that are considered spam or as "coordinated inauthentic behavior". It also uses fact checkers (even those who often say they are overloaded and under-supported) and machine learning to downgrade fraudulent or misleading posts and the pages they distribute into news feeds.

However, Facebook has made a big show on how important it is for elections following the fake news debacle in 2016 that are really scary. We're all over. Reuters wrote the decision to ban lies over voting restrictions is being issued under pressure from Congress:

The ban on false information on election methods, to be announced later on Monday, comes six weeks after Sen. Ron Wyden has asked the Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg on how Facebook would counteract suppression of votes, such as telling specific users that they can vote by text message, a hoax that has reduced turnout in the past.

Election method information becomes one of the few areas where falsehoods are banned on Facebook, a policy enforced by the company's "community standards" moderators, even though the application of their standards was uneven. It will not stop the vast majority of untrue posts about candidates or other election issues.

As Reuters noted, the spread of lies about when and where to vote is already banned by Facebook. CNBC reported that the changes extend this ban to "posts on exaggerated identification requirements", although it does not appear that lying or misleading statements about polling conditions would have anything to do with anything more serious than the standard fact-finding process. [19659004] The change also does not extend to general propaganda and misinformation about the elections.

"We do not think we should remove things from Facebook that are shared by authentic people if they do not violate these community standards, even if they're wrong," said Tessa Lyons, a Facebook product manager to Reuters , 19659004] According to Bloomberg, additional methods Facebook opens "direct lines of communication with the National Association of Secretaries of State and the National Association of State election directors," as well as users "directly report cases of oppression of voters when they see one"

Reuters wrote that Nathaniel Gleicher, head of Facebook's cybersecurity policy, also announced that the company had considered banning all hacked materials – with obvious consequences for material leaked by whistleblowers or leaked to journalists – while other sources said It was a short taunt to ban all political ads. None of these steps have been taken.

It is questionable if any of this works. Facebook has long said that it takes the issue seriously, but the measures it has were far from enough to stop the spread of junk, fake and hoax content on the site. This problem does not exist on Facebook either: Massive tech platforms in general, like Twitter and Google, similarly try to curb the beast they have unleashed, and it certainly does not help them to take their responsibility for what is going on , limit over their platforms in the first place. In any case, Facebook wants everyone to know that it's at least trying to do something before they shout at it inevitably.

[Reuters]


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