Fact-checking social media tools will help users make informed decisions: Experts

With Instagram recently rolling out an update to enable users to identify fake news, we speak to industry experts about the menace of misinformation

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Jan 7, 2020 9:23 AM
Fake news

With fake news being a burning issue in this day and age and with the increasing reach of the internet, social media platforms now are using technology to tackle the menace.

From Facebook to Twitter, each social media stakeholder is making efforts to deal with this growing trend of fake news. Recently, Facebook-owned Instagram rolled out an update that will enable users identify fake news through an independent fact-checker.

This fact-checking tool by Instagram will leverage third-party software to detect fake news by partnering with various organisations and media literacy experts.

We spoke to industry experts and political leaders to know their views on the menace of fake news and the efforts taken to curb the same, particularly in the wake of the upcoming Delhi elections.

Sameer Makani, Co-founder and Managing Director, Makani Creatives, said the new update from Instagram will surely help users identify and eradicate misinformation and enable them to decide for themselves what they want to read and share.

This tool will help users make informed judgements, largely increase transparency on social media and help in dampening fake news, which tends to spread like wildfire, Makani said.

When it comes to political agendas, digital messages today have the potential to reach more than half the population directly. If in 2014 India had the first social media election, 2019 saw the first Indian election being fought on mobile devices, say experts.

Anup Sharma, an independent political communications expert, said in many instances, across the world, fake news has often been used to describe information that has the potential to be detrimental for political leaders.

According to Dharika Merchant, COO, WORD and Alchemy Group: "With photo and video-based misinformation on the rise, brands have been looking at Brand Safety and Clean content, and they will be more open to building an ecosystem with news and content remaining to be clean and clear."

This Instagram tool will also stop spread of wrong agendas led by misinformation, Merchant added.

Sai Sangeeta Israni, GM, Marketing, Spykar Lifestyle Pvt. Ltd, said going forward advertisers and consumers will both value privacy and transparency and may eventually not mind their data being captured if it results in better value for both - the consumer and advertiser.

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