Facebook Promotes Hoax Content, Accidentally Identifies Wrong Man In Wake Of Las Vegas Shooting

mental_anguishFacebook was already under intense scrutiny for its role in allowing fake news and hoaxes to thrive on its platform. Now, the site is again facing outrage in the wake of Sunday’s tragic shooting in Las Vegas. At the center of this most recent controversy is the fact that Facebook shared fake content in its own Crisis Response center identifying the wrong shooter.

On Facebook’s Safety Check page for the Las Vegas mass shooting, the site linked to an article from a Blogspot site called “Alt-Right News” that blamed the shooting on a “Trump-hating Rachel Maddow fan.” Of course, it’s no surprise that content like this would crop up online in the wake of a tragedy. However, what is surprising is the fact that Facebook promoted it—on its Safety Check page, no less.

For its part, Facebook apologized for the mistake in allowing the content to remain up.

“Our Global Security Operations Center spotted the post this morning and removed it,” a spokesperson said. “However, its removal was delayed by a few minutes, allowing it to be screen captured and circulated online. We are working to fix the issue that allowed this to happen in the first place and deeply regret the confusion this caused.”

Of course, the real problem here is Facebook’s automated algorithms. If the company was a little more careful with how it reviewed content (or trusted more humans to do it), issues like this one might be avoided.


Recommended Resources

bitdefender trafficlightBitDefender Traffic Light is a free cross-browser add-on that intercepts, processes and filters all Web traffic, blocking any malicious content and taking browser security to new levels.

PIAPrivate Internet Access is an award-winning, cost-effective VPN solution. The use of an anonymous and trusted VPN is essential to your online privacy, security and identity protection.

System Mechanic 14 – Make your computer run like new. Winner of 200+ Editor’s Choice awards!

Facebook Hires 1,000 More Content Moderators Amid Controversy   Previous post Facebook Hires 1,000 More Content Moderators Amid Controversy Survey: Facebook Is The Least-Trusted Tech Company Next post Survey: Facebook Is The Least-Trusted Tech Company