Facebook will begin a pilot program for the state of Karnataka

Today, we are announcing a third-party fact-checking program in India. Aimed to fight the spread of false news on our platform, we have partnered with BOOM, an independent digital journalism initiative, for a pilot program that will first roll out in the state of Karnataka.

We have learned that once a story is rated as false, we have been able to reduce its distribution by 80%, and thereby improve accuracy of information on Facebook and reduce misinformation. Starting today, BOOM, certified through the International Fact-Checking Network, non-partisan international fact checking network at Poynter, will be able to review English language news stories flagged on Facebook, check facts, and rate their accuracy. We are beginning small and know it is important to learn from this test and listen to our community as we continue to update ways for people to understand what might be false news in their News Feed.

How does fact checking work?

  • When a fact-checker rates a story as false, we will show it lower in News Feed, significantly reducing its distribution. This in turn stops the hoax from spreading and reduces the number of people who see it.
  • Pages and domains that repeatedly share false news will also see their distribution reduced and their ability to monetize and advertise removed. This helps curb the spread of financially motivated false news.

We also want to empower people to decide for themselves what to read, trust, and share by providing the community with more information and control.

  • If third-party fact-checkers write articles debunking a false news story, we’ll show it in Related Articles immediately below the story in News Feed.
  • We’ll also send people and Page Admins notifications if they try to share a story or have shared one in the past that’s been determined to be false.

While third party fact checking is part of our ongoing efforts to combat spread of false news, we are working hard to improve the accuracy of information on Facebook in various ways . We are working to give people more control and encouraging them tell us by giving Feedback when they see false news. More recently we ran PSAs to teach people how to spot false news in order to make more informed decisions and will continue our efforts to educate people.