“Facebook Inc and Twitter Inc have joined a network of over 30 news and technology companies to tackle fake news and improve the quality of information on social media, the group said on Tuesday. First Draft Coalition, formed in June 2015 with the backing of Alphabet Inc’s Google, said it would create a voluntary code of practice, promote news literacy among social media users, and launch a platform where members can verify questionable news stories. The platform will be launched by the end of October, Jenni Sargent, managing director of the coalition, said in an email. Members of the group include the New York Times, Washington Post, BuzzFeed News, Agence France-Presse and CNN.” – reuters.com
I would say that using news companies to tackle the problem of fake news is really just one side of the story. I think the way ahead could be to use news and report services based on some kind of blockchain technology, where the authenticity of the content is verified by a large number of users.
Today’s world is simply too fast to wait for confirmation from news agencies in the case of a terrorist attack or a plane crash. Facebook and Twitter will need to decide whether they want to be the first to report, or the most authentic.
Even though blockchain technology could prevent large numbers of people from faking news, still the Internet is a strange place where enough people can still get through with seemingly impossible and stupid ideas like “Boaty McBoatface”. Also, if there was an article about resurrecting the gorilla shot at Cincinnati Zoo as a cyborg to take revenge on its killer, people would vote for it in a flash… Never underestimate the power of trolls in large numbers, they might even defeat the best security system too…