Facebook has been taking concrete steps to tackle the fake news problem on its platform. The company today announced that it’s no longer going to allow Pages that spread fake news to buy ads. It will actively block Pages from advertising on the site as long as they’re spreading fake news. It already doesn’t allow advertisers to run ads that link to stories that have been marked false by third-party fact-checking organizations.
Facebook has confirmed in a statement that if Pages repeatedly share stories that have been marked as false, the repeat offenders will no longer be allowed to advertise on Facebook. The company says that this is going to help reduce the distribution of fake news which will prevent Pages that spread fake news from making money.
It has found instances of Pages using Facebook ads to build their audiences in order to spread fake news more broadly. “False news is harmful to our community. It makes the world less informed and erodes trust,” Facebook says.
It has been working to fight the spread of false news in three key areas. They include disrupting the economic incentives to create fake news, building new products that help curb their spread, and enabling users to make more informed decisions when they encounter fake news. The ban on advertising won’t be permanent, though.
Facebook says that if those Pages stop sharing fake news, they will be eligible to start running as once again.