A presidential election will be commencing in France later this year. Like any other presidential election worldwide, the social media landscape will be filled with news surrounding the election, including undetected fake news as well. In order to combat the rampant spread of fake news, Facebook has announced a fake news filter for its users residing in France.
Facebook has established partnerships with a total of 8 French media companies to assist with the fake news filter on its social network. Among the known companies include Le Monde, Agence France-Presse (AFP), Franceinfo and BFM-TV. This move by Facebook and the French media is similar to what the social networking giant has been doing in Germany and the US for their respective elections, though Facebook has been criticized especially during the US presidential elections that the company’s efforts were insufficient in combating fake news.
As for how the filter will work, when users report an article of news as false, the article will then be linked to a platform that is accessible to the 8 media partners of Facebook. As long as two companies are able to confirm the article as false with relevant links to support their claim, the article will then be flagged on Facebook, and there will be a warning prompt to Facebook users before they attempt to share the false article.
The French election will be carried out in April and May later this year, so Facebook and its media partners will have some time to give this exclusive feature a test run before going full force when the election season draws near.