Facebook fakes it
Facebook is a major enabler of fake news, according to a new report. With its advertising-led business model, the social network is able to win big by supporting fake – “Political disinformation succeeds because it follows the structural logic, benefits from the products and perfects the strategies of the broader digital advertising market,” write Dipayan Ghosh and Ben Scott in research, Digital Deceit, published by New America.
Interestingly, Ghosh is a former privacy and public policy advisor for Facebook.
“The central problem of disinformation corrupting American political culture is not Russian spies or a particular social media platform,” the co-authors say. “The central problem is that the entire industry is built to leverage sophisticated technology to aggregate user attention and sell advertising.”
Ghosh and Scott are asking for changes to electoral law, data privacy protections, and competition policy. “The nature of this crisis in media and democracy requires an ambitious approach to reform from Silicon Valley C-Suites to Capitol Hill to the handsets of everyday Internet users,” they say.