Google and Facebook crack down
It’s hit headlines recently about the attempts of networks such as Facebook and Google to cut the profits companies are making from publishing fake news stories. They will be banning these companies from joining their advertising network.
This action has been spurred on by criticism following the US election. Some commentators have accused the sharing of false news of being the reason for Hilary Clinton’s loss.
The reason people have requested tighter policies for the handling of fake news, is the belief that currently Facebook does not have enough regulation in place to detect misinformation being shared into its News Feed. Google are also reported to be acting similarly, restricting adverts from being shown on fake news sites.
People are wanting to see a stronger stance against making profits on free information that is inaccurate, and is calling for balance and checks to be performed to ensure cuts on the amount of space these sites are able to take up on the internet.
However it seems at current unclear how exactly larger social media sites and search engines will be able to enact this toughing approach.
Impact on the Elections
A story published by Denver Guardian that reported an FBI agent suspected in the Hilary email scandal was found dead in an apparent ‘murder-suicide.’
However it was later discovered such news outlet did not exist. Commentators have expressed opinion they believe this news story provoked negative reactions in the voting public that harmed Clinton’s reputation.
One theory of the story’s origin is that it was produced by some teens who were seeking dupe Trump supporters with the spreading of untrue or incorrect events.
The Pope is endorsing Trump
WTOE 5 News – website reported that The Pope had broken from tradition and was backing the candidate Trump for President of the U.S
wtoe5news.com was later found to be posing as a local TV news outlet, and in reality most of the stories issued on the site were fantastical or satirical.
Commentators have accused the Hoax story line for encouraging voters to believe in Trump, due to the influence of The Pope and his position of power for those with strong religious beliefs and perhaps even those outside of it, who would naturally trust his judgement due to his standing in society.
For those that did not recognise this story as being fake, it could have swayed their opinions and been the deciding factor in who they wanted as their President.
Did fake news impact the result
Commentators have stated believing the sharing of these stories as regulated news may have influenced the views and opinions of the public, who have been misfed information. It says it could have damaged the reputation of Clinton and bolstered Trump’s.
Many will look to the media to provide factual responses to current affairs and in trusting in this power will respond to the events being reported as truthful. They will found their own beliefs in reactions to what they are reading.
Others have had a more sceptical response to this allegation denying Facebook influenced the result of the election. Mark Zuckerberg was quoted stating that it was ‘a pretty crazy idea.’