Facebook on Tuesday said that disinformation with the deliberate intent to mislead the public as part of a manipulation campaign using fake accounts will not be tolerated and these actors and their contents will be taken down immediately.
According to Facebook Product Policy Manager Misinformation Alice Budisatrjjo, the company has a viable mechanism to deal with false information which could cause violence or imminent harm.
She was addressing a virtual briefing on fighting Misinformation at “Facebook: Keeping our Community Safe and Informed” via Zoom yesterday morning.
“Facebook has built a strong partnership with Sri Lanka’s Health Promotion Bureau (HPB) to help build capacity, raise awareness about COVID-19-related health measures and support the vaccine roll-out”.
She added that the company succeeded in launching a public health education campaign to tackle misinformation and will continue to direct people to the Health Promotion Bureau’s website for latest information.
Budisatrjjo while stressing that the people should have access to credible information said misinformation around COVID- 19 and false claims related to vaccines will be removed from the platform.
“For example, if content in the Facebook suggests that COVID-19 vaccine causes autism or miscarriage, such content will be removed because the WHO has said that there is no scientific evidence to prove the claim,” she said.
She said that the company is always gathering information from health authorities and the World Health Organization in particular when dealing with misinformation with COVID-19.
However, Budisatjjo emphasized information with regard to the efficacy of vaccines and experiences of those who were vaccinated based on their experience or evidence will not be removed.
“We know how essential it is for the people to have access to credible information and for us to remove harmful content,” she said. She also said that the users can always report, if their information is removed by Facebook or when they disagree with the decision made by Facebook.
We have three pillars of strategy: We don’t want to remove all of them, we will not remove all, we will remove the content that could mislead the public in the context of COVID-19 pandemic.
She said that the company has a three pronged strategy to deal with misinformation on Facebook.
“We have a three-part strategy for addressing misinformation on Facebook – Remove, Reduce and Inform. A part of this strategy is our third party fact checking programme,” she said.