Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Why is it so hard to stop spreading false information about COVID-19?

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Why is it so hard to stop spreading false information about COVID-19?


So hard to stop spreading false information about COVID-19
Even before the Coronavirus(COVID-19) was under increasing pressure to change the life and spread of misinformation on social media platforms, globally informatic.

Last year, Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg called for new principles for dealing with "harmful content, electoral integrity, privacy, and data portability."


Now, amid a rapidly evolving epidemic, when more and more people use social media for news and information, it is more important than ever that people trust this content.

Digital platforms are now taking further steps to remove misinformation about COVID-19 in their services. In a joint statement, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Reddit, Twitter, and YouTube have pledged to work together to combat misinformation.

Facebook has traditionally adopted a less active approach to counter anonymous information. Through its commitment to safeguarding free expression, the platform is allowed to become anonymous in political advertising.

However, until recently, Facebook's spam filter inadvertently flagged legitimate information about COVID-19 as spam. Although Facebook has since corrected the error, the incident has automatically revealed the limits of moderate tools.

In a move in the right direction, Facebook is allowing the National Ministry of Health and Trusted Organizations to post accurate information about Code 19 for free. Twitter, which restricts political advertising, allows links to websites from the Australian Department of Health and the World Health Organization.
Twitter has also announced a set of changes to its rules, including an update on how harmful content is being addressed in relation to public health information and automation and The use of machine learning technology increases. Detect and eliminate possible abuse. And manipulative materials.

Previous unsuccessful attempts
Unfortunately, Twitter has failed in its recent efforts to tackle misinformation (or, more precisely, misinformation - intentionally posted with incorrect information).

The platform has begun tagging manipulated videos and images as "manipulation media". The first major test of the move was Democratic presidential nominee Biden's widely-released video, in which a section of a phrase was edited to show that he predicted the election of President Donald Trump. doing.

It took Twitter 18 hours to tag the video, by which time it had already received 5 million views and 21,000 retweets.


This tag appeared at the bottom of the video (rather than being featured) and was only visible to the 757,000 accounts that followed the original poster of the video, Dan Scaquinho, White House social media director. Customers who viewed the content via rewatch from the White House (21 million followers) or President Donald Trump (76 million followers) did not see the tag.

Labeling incorrect information does not work
There are four main reasons why Twitter (and other platforms) 's attempts to tag inaccurate information have failed.

First, social media platforms use automated algorithms for these tasks, because they are on a good scale. But tagging manipulative tweets requires human work. The algorithm cannot explain complex human interactions. Will the social media platform invest in humanitarian work to address this issue? The problems are long.

Second, tweets can be shared millions of times before tagging. Even if they are removed, they can be easily edited and republished to avoid algorithmic detection.

Third, and more importantly, labels can even react and boost the audience's interest. On the contrary, labels can actually increase rather than minimize misinformation.


Finally, creators of misleading content can deny that their content was an attempt to cross and claim unfair censorship, knowing that they will find a sympathetic audience in the social media hypertension field.

So how can we overcome the misinformation?
The situation may seem impossible, but there are some practical strategies that the media, social media platforms and the public can use.

First, refrain from attracting more attention until misinformation reaches a wider audience. Why give it more oxygen than it deserves?

Second, if misunderstanding has reached the point where it needs to be discredited, be sure to emphasize facts rather than just blowing flames. Consult with experts and trusted sources, and use the "truth sandwich" in which you declare the truth, and then give the wrong information, and eventually repeat the truth.

Third, the social media platform should be more willing to remove or ban unreliable content. This can include disabling likes, shares, and retweeting specific posts and preventing users from repeatedly misleading others.

For example, Twitter recently removed false information about the Coronavirus(COVID-19) posted by Rudy Gilani and Charlie Kirk. The Enforce app has been removed from the Google App Store. And perhaps most impressively, Google's Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube removed the misinformation about Brazilian President Javier Bolsonaro's crown.


Lastly, we, as social media users, play an important role in the fight against misinformation. Before sharing something, think carefully about where it came from. Verify the source and its evidence, double-check from other independent sources, and report the suspicious content directly to the platform. Now, more than ever, we need information we can trust.

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Why is it so hard to stop spreading false information about COVID-19?
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