Facebook is cracking down on pages that spread misinformation as the biggest social networking giant recently announced it is taking steps against the platform’s spread of anti-vaccine information. This will be done by reducing the distribution of misleading medical advice and relying on vetting from leading global health organizations that’ have identified publicly verifiable vaccines hoaxes.
Facebook now plans to provide users with authoritative information on the controversial topic as stated in a statement on Thursday by Monika Bickert, Vice President of Global Policy Management at Facebook.
“If this vaccine misinformation is posted by a group or Page administrator, we will exclude the entire group or Page from recommendations, reduce these groups and the distribution of Pages in News Feed and Search, and reject advertisements with this misinformation.”
Additionally, advertisements that contain false vaccine facts will be immediately dismissed and removed. Specifically, if those ad account owners continue to spread misinformation, Facebook warns that the account will be disabled. It will also curb vaccine misinformation from Instagram, which is owned by Facebook.
The decision of Facebook comes to light after a recent Senate hearing on how to stop the outbreak of preventable diseases, where an 18-year-old boy — Ethan Lindenberger, testified that he was immunized against the wishes of his mother. It is said that her mother had developed anti-vaccine beliefs through her involvement with various Facebook groups.
“They instill fear in the public for their own selfish gain for certain individuals and organizations that spread this misinformation, and do so knowing that their information is incorrect,” Lindenberger remarked.
The United States a month ago Adam Schiff Representative, D-Calif. A letter to Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, addressing the shortcomings of Facebook in countering the dispersal of inaccurate information. He passed remarks in the letter that Facebook and Instagram are “surfacing and recommending messages” that demoralize the vaccination of children.