In the wake of accidentally helping Russia influence the U.S. presidential election, Facebook has been trying to figure out ways to stem the tide of fake news flooding the social network. First, it tried red flags, but like someone trying to pick a fight with a bull, the red flags only encouraged people to click and share the flagged stories.
Now Facebook reportedly has a new plan: shrink news links deemed to be false.
The company detailed its fight against misinformation at the Fighting Abuse @Scale event in San Francisco, as TechCrunch first reported. The social media site is reportedly rolling out a plan to reduce the size of news that has been confirmed to be false. That way when it shows up in news stories on mobile, it’s harder to read and easier to miss. The shrunken stories are accompanied by a “Related Articles” box with links that debunk the fake news story.
It’s a clever idea, and for publishers and content creators, they now have a built-in excuse if their stories don’t gain traction on Facebook: THERE WAS SHRINKAGE!
We reached out to Facebook for more details and will update if we hear back.