Facebook is planning an operations centre in Delhi that will to monitor content relating to Elections 2019 on its platform
India will coordinate with Facebook's other offices in Menlo Park, Dublin and Singapore to keep tabs on election-related fake news
New Delhi: In a bid to prevent the spread of fake news on its platform ahead of Elections 2019, Facebook Inc. plans to start an operations centre in Delhi, which will coordinate with the social media giant’s offices at Menlo Park (California), Dublin and Singapore, on a 24x7 basis to monitor election content, said Shivnath Thukral, director, public policy, India and South Asia, Facebook.
With this move, Facebook aims for constant engagement with the Election Commission of India (ECI) to understand how it can ensure the coming polls are safe from abuse and misinformation on its platform, said Thukral.
Its first big priority is to remove fake accounts that are the source of misinformation. It claims to have taken down two billion fake profiles between September 2017 and October 2018 in its fight against bots, and their creators, using a combination of machine learning and human reviews.
The company has partnered with seven companies—BOOMLive, AFP, India Today Group, Vishvas.news, Factly, Newsmobile and Fact Crescendo—across languages, including English, Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Malayalam and Marathi, for fact-checking.
Once a third-party fact-checker marks something as false, the posts see reducing future impressions by 80%. The company metrics show that virality of stories has gone down significantly after Facebook launched fact-checking across the globe.
The third leg is to create more and more transparency and authenticity for political advertising on Facebook, informed Thukral. The ads transparency tool has been rolled out in India, following its success in the US, Brazil and the UK. This includes the authorization process for advertisers and the disclaimer process that provides more information about who’s placing the ad.
Additionally, all political ads are now housed in the ad library so a Facebook user can see the ad’s creative, start and end date, performance data, including the range of impressions, spend, and information such as who saw the ad, including the person’s age, gender and location across India.
Also, starting this month, the company has started publishing a weekly ad archive report in India that lists various insights such as the top spenders, to ensure all the information is in public domain, said Thukral.
The report is a key part of Facebook’s ongoing election integrity efforts.
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