These days, Facebook faces near-constant criticism for not doing enough to get rid of fake news. The site has pledged to step up its efforts to curb the problem, and it has, taking several steps including adding warning flags to suspicious content before users share it. However, the site put its money where its mouth is this week and joined several other major tech organizations to dedicate $14 million to the News Integrity Initiative.
The social media giant, Mozilla and Craigslist founder Craig Newmark are putting up the money to create the group, which will be supervised by the CUNY School of Journalism. The goal is to promote news literacy — in other words, help users figure out what’s real and what’s not.
“The initiative will address the problems of misinformation, disinformation and the opportunities the internet provides to inform the public conversation in new ways,” Campbell Brown, Facebook’s head of news partnerships, said in a statement.
Altogether, 19 organizations came together to create the News Integrity Initiative, including several international universities, the founder of Wikipedia and a branch of the United Nations. Let’s hope this signifies that Facebook is actually serious about stopping this problem — and all of the lies, hoaxes and malware that comes with it.