TOWIE's Megan McKenna divides opinion after debuting HUGE pout and very plump new lips

The Essex star split from boyfriend Pete Wicks earlier this month

Fans of TOWIE ’s Megan McKenna have been left divided after she debuted a VERY large new pout on Instagram overnight.

The Essex beauty, 24, uploaded a sultry selfie showcasing her plump lips after visiting a Natasha Lucy Clinic in Essex, which specialises in "advanced aesthetic techniques".

She told fans: “Lips done by the lovely @natashalucyclinics.”

Natasha replied: "It was a pleasure to welcome you to my clinic, I'm so glad you are pleased with the results."

Megan’s dramatic and eye-catching new look certainly had her fans talking, with some totally loving her glossy, oversized pout and others not so sure about the look.

One user said: “Those lips are far too big… embrace the natural beauty.”

Another added: “Those lips are ridiculous.”

And a third chipped in: “I really don't understand this business with big lips. They’re are so fake …”

Another comment added: “Sausage lips are not pretty.”

But plenty more rushed to lavish Megan with compliments and say she’d inspired them to pursue a similar look.

One gushed: “Your lips look amazing!”

Another said: “Megan, you are beautiful.”

A third told the TOWIE star to ignore what anyone else said and just do what she wanted to do with regards to her appearance.

“Why do people think it's okay to tell you they don't like they way you look?" wrote the user. "You are still a person! It's like the think once u become famous people think they have a right to tell you what they don't like.”

Megan is currently a single lady after splitting from TOWIE co-star boyfriend Pete Wicks earlier this month.

Pete tweeted last week to insist it was a mutual decision, saying: “Just to clarify, Megan and I split because it was an unhealthy relationship. We hadn’t been happy for a while and both agreed #EnoughSaid.”

His comment came after Essex co-star Chloe Sims told Star magazine: “They were happy, then she broke up with him out of the blue. Pete confides in me and he’s been in tears. I feel really sorry for him.”

Source: Mirror

The singer was supported by former bandmate Emma Bunton as she laid her dad to rest

Mel B was supported by her Spice Girl bandmate as she laid her father to rest.

A funeral for the singer's father Martin Brown was held in Leeds on Friday.

She was supported by pal Emma Bunton and other famous friends, such as Kerry Katona, as she said a final farewell to her dad, who lost his battle with cancer earlier this month, aged 63.

The tragedy has brought 41-year-old Mel back together with her sister Danielle, after the pair fell out years ago.

A source told The Sun: "Mel is finally back in touch with her family and everyone is thrilled. They are working hard to keep relationships positive."

It comes after news broke that Mel will divorce her husband Stephen Belafonte , 41.

The star has wasted no time placing her marital Hollywood Hills house on the market as she plans to “move on as quickly as she can” with her life.

And she is so desperate to move out as soon as possible, that she is leaving most of their designer furniture in the pad.

Mel instructed estate agents to sell their modern looking, lavishly redesigned home for around £7.5million as she jetted out of Los Angeles with her kids.

Friends say she will share the profit of the sale with her ex, but will not then pay spousal support in the long term.

Insiders say Mel is keen to “make a fresh start” in her life, and is mulling over where to live.

She knows she will need a Los Angeles home as both Belafonte and ex Eddie Murphy would have visiting rights to their kids .

However, following talks with friends, she feels a complete step outside of her past is the best way forward.

Source: Mirror

Two-thirds of hate speech messages were spotted on Twitter

Hundreds of thousands of anti-Semitic posts were made online last year, with two-thirds of those found on Twitter, according to one study.

The World Jewish Congress, with the help of monitoring firm Vigo Social Intelligence, analysed millions of posts across Facebook, Twitter and more, spotting more than 382,000 anti-Semitic messages left online over the course of 2016. Of those, 63% were spotted on Twitter. 

The high rate of hate speech isn't a surprise to anyone who has spent time online, with MPs accusing social firms of "peddling online hate" in the name of advertising revenue, with Google in particular facing pressure after government public awareness ads were shown next to terrorist recruitment material.

“We knew that anti-Semitism online was on the rise, but the numbers revealed in this report give us concrete data as to how alarming the situation really is,” World Jewish Congress CEO and executive vice president Robert R. Singer said in a statement. “We hope this serves as a wake-up call to all internet forums to maintain moral standards, rid themselves of offensive content, and make the digital world a safer place for all.”

The study didn't look at criticism of Israel. 

The bulk of the anti-Semitic messages were spotted on Twitter, at two-thirds the total, followed by 16% on blogs, and 11% on Facebook. The larger proportion of such hate speech found on Twitter could be because it's easier to search for comments than other social sites - as many Facebook pages will not be public - and it's easy for individuals to open and run multiple accounts. 

Asked for comment, Twitter responded by pointing to its work with the European Jewish Congress, its policies against hate speech, and its efforts to battle abuse, including new tools to mute accounts and staff training.

Source: IT Pro

While Google continues to add more features to its two social communication apps Allo and Duo, TechCrunch has learned that it has quietly been working on least one more social app. Google has been developing a new social app that lets small groups edit photos together and then organise them for future enjoyment: think Path meets Snapchat-style filters and edits meets Google’s imaging smarts.

Google confirmed the existence of the app after we asked about it, and told us that (for now) is an experiment, one of many it’s running.

But it sounds like Google may be downplaying this a bit.  According to our sources, one plan had been to launch the app during its I/O event in May — much as it did last year with Duo and Allo — although from what we understand right now there is no specific date set.

Could the announcement this week of Clips from Apple, a video editing app that will also use AI, image recognition and speech recognition, also have played a part in deciding timing?

We also don’t know what name Google is planning for it, but here is what we do know.

The approach the developers are taking is not to make “yet another messaging app” but more of a collaborative social photo app. Users can create groups for sharing pictures. And then group members would all be able to edit and tag the same pictures.

Alongside this, Google would apply some of its own computer vision expertise and technology — currently used across services like YouTube, Google’s image search, and Google Photos — to help users along: it will be able to identify objects in a photo to tag them and organise them and in the future search for them, as well as to help edit and apply filters to the pictures.

We think some of the photo features in the app sound a lot like Clips, the app that Apple is planning to release in April that will use  “They are building a competitor to Path,” is how one person we know described it, in reference to the social app founded by Dave Morin, the investor who also was an early employee at Facebook; and Shawn Fanning and Dustin Mireau, both formerly of Napster.

Path gained some early popularity for providing a way for small groups of friends to share pictures and chat with each other, one of the early counterbalances to the more open-ended, share-everything tendencies on services like Twitter and Facebook.

In a little twist of what might have been, Google even tried to buy it. But as is often the way with apps, Path eventually waned in popularity. It was eventually sold to Korean messaging giant Kakao in 2015 (it’s still around btw).

Google has had a very patchy history when it comes to social media, and it’s an area that the company still trying to get right. The current strategy seems to be one of running a bunch of slightly different apps and efforts simultaneously to see what works, and what does not (which could be one reason why this was worked on as a separate app rather than, say, as part of an update to Google Photos).

While Allo and Duo continue to get updates, Spaces — a group app for sharing and exploring links to things by tapping into other existing Google services, which seems closest to what it’s trying to build in the app that’s being tested now — closed down after less than a year.

Then there is G+, still going but not the social networking magnet that Google once envisioned it could be. Google Wave, Google Buzz and Orkut are among the various efforts that have come and gone after failing to get enough traction.

Why keep returning to social? Because Google faces competition from the likes of Facebook, Twitter and now Snapchat for consumers’ — and thus advertisers’ — attention. Many (not all but many) users today do not think of search engines first when looking for information, deciding how to spend their money, and finding things to entertain themselves. They go to these other apps, and that ultimately can cut into Google’s mainstay advertising business and revenues.

YouTube, with its focus on user-generated videos mixed with premium content like Vevo, remains Google’s most successful social play, although it’s known more for ushering in virally popular material rather than for helping to keep the conversation going around it (although Google does do some of that, too, in videos’ comments section).

The fact that Google is considering how it can leverage some of the tech that’s been built to help power image search on YouTube, its search portal and its Photos app, to see if that can be used to get a foothold in social is interesting. As is the timing: Apple will be releasing its own gentle step into social media apps — Clips, which lets you edit videos and then share them on various social networks — in April.

Source: techcrunch

If there’s an Apple TV compatible version of your favorite iPhone or iPad app, but it never makes it to your Apple TV, that doesn’t do you a lot of good. Fortunately, with a simple tweak, you can ensure you’re getting the best apps on both your phone and your TV.

Now that Apple TV and the underlying tvOS have started to mature, there are tons of crossover apps that bring your favorite iOS apps to your TV. In fact, there are so many tvOS apps now, it’s easy to overlook them and not even realize that your favorite time-wasting iPad game or iPhone media app is available on the Apple TV. Thankfully, since the introduction of tvOS 10, you can configure your Apple TV to automatically grab the tvOS versions of iOS apps installed on iPhones and iPads that share the same Apple ID. The feature is off by default, however, so let’s take a moment to flip it on.

Open up the Settings app on your Apple TV and select the “Apps” category.

Toggle “Automatically Install Apps” on (and, if for some reason “Automatically Update Apps” is off, turn that on also).

Now, whenever you install an app on an iOS device that uses the same Apple ID as your Apple TV, if there is a compatible app for tvOS it will be automatically loaded on your Apple TV. While that was simple enough, our work here isn’t quite done. Turning the “Automatically Install Apps” function on doesn’t retroactively apply the feature to iOS apps you’ve already downloaded. So you’ll need to manually add apps to your Apple TV that predate this setting change.

Thankfully, it’s super easy to see which apps are missing. Open up the App Store app on your Apple TV and navigate to the “Purchased” tab, as seen below. There you can select “Not on This Apple TV” and see all the apps you’ve purchased on your mobile device that have companion tvOS apps.

Simply select the apps you want on your Apple TV and install them. Don’t worry if you find yourself buried under new apps—it’s very simple to rearrange your apps for a more user-friendly experience and delete apps to free up space

From this point forward, the only time you’ll need to manually install apps on your Apple TV is if you are either a) installing a tvOS only application that won’t be automatically installed as a companion app, or b) installing an app purchased by a member of your “Family Sharing” family.

If, for example, your daughter bought a TV-worthy game on her iPad, like Transistor or Lumino City, and either of you want to play it on the Apple TV,  you’ll have to manually install it by opening up the App Store app, selecting “Family Sharing” and then selecting the user that purchased the app. There you can browse their purchased apps and download them to your Apple TV just like we browsed the “Not on This Apple TV” category above.

Other than the minor hiccup of manually installing old and shared apps, the process is very smooth and all your apps will automatically make the jump from your iPhone to your Apple TV without a hitch.

Source: howtogeek

You see it every time you log into your Mac: your profile picture. If you’re like most people, you picked it way back when you set up your laptop, but how do you change it now?

It’s simple. Head to System Preferences, then click “Users & Groups.”

You’ll see a list of users in the left; the current user will be selected. Hover your mouse over your Profile Picture and the word “Edit” will appear.

Click this and a popup will let you pick a new picture. You can select from among the default offerings…

…or you can click the “Camera” option to take a picture with your webcam.

Remember, kids: never look straight at the camera.

You can also browse your entire Photos library, and choose something from there.

Annoyingly, there’s no way to simply browse your computer for a file, meaning if you want to download a photo from the web, you’re going to have to add it to the Photos app in order to use it. This wasn’t the case until recently, and is honestly kind of user-hostile, but I guess Apple really wants people using Photos.
When you’ve chosen a picture, you can crop it yourself. The circle overlay lets you see how the new icon will look.

Click “Save” once you’re happy with your changes, and you’re done! You’ll now see your new icon every time you start up your Mac, and every time you lock the screen.

Source: howtogeek

If you are thinking about setting up a web server, do you need a computer specifically built with that purpose in mind or can you use a more common type of computer? Today’s SuperUser Q&A post has the answer to a curious reader’s question.

Today’s Question & Answer session comes to us courtesy of SuperUser—a subdivision of Stack Exchange, a community-driven grouping of Q&A web sites.

The Question

SuperUser reader VincentTheonardo wants to know what determines if a PC is able to be a web server or not:

I have some questions about using a computer as a web server. Why can certain computers act as a web server and what features make them able to do so? Are there any cases where a computer is unable to act as a web server?

What determines if a PC is able to be a web server or not?

The Answer

SuperUser contributor davidgo has the answer for us:

Pretty much any computer can be used as a web server, provided it can connect to a network and run web server software. Since a web server can be quite simple and there are free and open source web servers available, in practice, any device can act as a web server.

The bigger problem is the networking side. In order for a system to act as a server, other machines need to be able to access it. If it is just for use in a LAN setup, there are no concerns. However, if it is for use with the wider Internet, then data needs to be routed to it. This requires either a static IP address associated with the server (or port-forwarded through a router) or an external service which can map a domain name/subdomain to a changing dynamic IP address.

For what it is worth, you can buy $10 computers that are capable of acting as a basic web server. Of course, while any device can act as a web server, the functionality of websites can vary hugely, and a cheap device (or slow connection) may not be able to keep up with the demand depending on what the specific website is.

Note that everything above talks about web servers, but the same can be said for pretty much any type of server.

Source: howtogeek

A paid tier would add enhanced analytics tools to its TweetDeck platform

Twitter is considering adding a paid tier for "power users" and businesses in need of stronger analytics tools to manage followers and trending news.

Users on TweetDeck could soon be able to subscribe to a premium option that would allow them access to an enhanced version, although the core platform would remain the same.

Twitter users have been tweeting screenshots of the surveys, showing mock ups of potential layout changes for its TweetDeck platform, the more comprehensive interface that allows greater functionality than its standard website.
Although Twitter is only assessing interest at this stage, it would allow for an additional stream of cash at a time when advertising, its primary source of revenue, is in decline.

In a statement seen by the BBC, Twitter said: "We regularly conduct user research to gather feedback about people's Twitter experience and to better inform our product investment decisions, and we're exploring several ways to make Tweetdeck even more valuable for professionals."

Twitter has contacted a number of select users for feedback and to explain how the new service might function.

"This premium tool set will provide valuable viewing, posting, and signaling tools like alerts, trends and activity analysis, advanced analytics, and composing and posting tools all in one customisable dashboard," the email read.

"It will be designed to make it easier than ever to keep up with multiple interests, grow your audience, and see even more great content and information in real-time."

However this isn't the first time Twitter has experimented with premium features. In 2009, co-founder Biz Stone talked about the creation of subscription-based tools, but these never materialised, and Stone has since walked away from the company.

Source: itpro

Social network warns users when they're about to post a questionable story

Facebook is following through on CEO Mark Zuckerberg's pledge to fight fake news, rolling out a tool that notifies users when content is of questionable veracity.

The new feature was first reported by users trying to share a story from the Newport Buzz about a supposed Irish slave trade.

When users attempted to post a link to the story, a message would flash up under the link which alerted them to the fact that the story is "disputed by and Associated Press" - Snopes is a website famous for debunking false stories.

If users ignore this alert, a further pop-up will appear, re-emphasising the fact that multiple sources say it could be inaccurate. Users can dismiss this and post the link regardless, but it will appear on other users' timelines with a tag indicating its 'disputed' status.

When the Guardian tried the new feature in its San Francisco office it worked, but its London and Sydney offices had no such luck, indicating that the company is initially rolling it out in select areas as part of a trial programme.

The 2016 presidential elections threw a spotlight onto the issue of 'fake news' - heavily biased or outright fabricated stories, written with a sensationalist slant in order to garner as many social shares as possible.

Experts have said that many voters will accept these stories as true - regardless of how legitimate the source is - and warn that they could prove a threat to intelligent political discourse.

Late last year, the company announced that it would be working to identify these stories to users, with the help of five independent fact-checking organisations: Snopes, Politifact,, the Associated Press and ABC News.

16/01/2017: Germany set to test Facebook's fake news filters

Facebook will trial its new fake news prevention system in Germany.

Facebook is planning a range of techniques to battle fake news, but the Financial Times reports the German trial will let users report a story as fake to Correctiv, an independent investigative news service. Correctiv will check the story, flag it as disputed if there's concern, and explain the facts behind the article. Any disputed stories will not be surfaced by Facebook's news feed and be banned from ads, and the site will warn anyone who tries to share the link - though not block them from doing so. 

The German trial announcement comes weeks after the country said it planned to fine the social site if it didn't remove such posts within a day, ahead of its own elections.

The potential €500,000 fine may have spurred Facebook to test the technology in Germany, but it was already working on the system to battle fake news following criticism the site helped spread falsehoods during the American election. Germany's Justice Minister Heiko Mass told a local newspaper over the weekend that fake news was a "danger to our culture of debate" and called for social networks to make it easier to report fake news. 

Facebook said it was planning to extend its efforts to other countries soon. "When we launched this in the US we said that we would expand the pilot into other countries over time," a company spokesperson told Gizmodo. "We’ve listened to our community and begun talks with other global partners, and the readiness of German partners allows us to begin testing in Germany. We expect to announce efforts in additional countries soon."

12/01/2017: Facebook plans assault on fake news

Facebook plans to build new products and even train journalists in order to combat fake news stories.

The Facebook Journalism Project will, the social network hopes, "establish stronger ties between Facebook and the news industry".

It comes after Facebook was criticised for it's role in circulating fake news stories about Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and President-elect Donald Trump during the run up to the US election.

The project will see the company work with news organisations to develop new tools for sharing news, saying it's planning to work with publications "across the spectrum". The company will also develop its existing news formats including Live, 360, and Instant Articles, and create new ones.

One method would see Facebook users get packages of stories at a time, said Fidji Simo, director of product at the tech giant. "We're going to start testing this using Instant Articles, so that readers can start to see multiple stories at a time from their favorite news organisations," Simo said in a blog post.

Facebook also wants to train journalists on how to use its tools, and in the coming months will offer a "certificate curriculum" for them.

Lastly, the company wants to train users to distinguish between fake news and actual news, and make it easier for them to report hoax stories.

"We will work with third-party organisations on how to better understand and to promote news literacy both on and off our platform to help people in our community have the information they need to make decisions about which sources to trust," Simo wrote.

It will start by running "public service ads" on Facebook about the issue.

16/12/2016: Fakebook reveals plans to tackle fake news

Facebook has shared more details of how it plans to tackle fake news on its social media platform, after it was accused of allowing a proliferation of false news that may have swayed the outcome of the recent US presidential election.

In a post, Facebook VP Adam Mosseri said that Facebook will introduce easier ways of reporting hoaxes, and has started collaborating with a number of third-party fact-checking organisations.

Mosseri wrote: "We're testing several ways to make it easier to report a hoax if you see one on Facebook, which you can do by clicking the upper right-hand corner of a post. We've relied heavily on our community for help on this issue, and this can help us detect more fake news."

The company has also started a program in collaboration with fact checking parties that abide by Poynter's International Fact Checking Code of Principles, which include ABC News, Full Fact and other organisations worldwide.

These organisations will fact check content on the platform and report stories that they found to be unreliable. The social media giant will then flag them as 'disputed' and provide a link to an article explaining why this is the case. 'Disputed' stories should also appear lower down in the News Feed.

Although Facebook users will still be able to share stories flagged as 'disputed', they will receive a notification before they share them saying "Disputed by 3rd Parties - Before you share this story, you might want to know that independent fact-checkers disputed its accuracy".

Mosseri's post adds: "We've found that if reading an article makes people significantly less likely to share it, that may be a sign that a story has misled people in some way. We're going to test incorporating this signal into ranking, specifically for articles that are outliers, where people who read the article are significantly less likely to share it."

Facebook said it also found many fake news propagators to be financially motivated, posting unreliable content pretending to be an established news source, in order to increase traffic on their website.

To reduce these instances, Facebook eliminated the ability to spoof domains and is now analysing publisher sites to detect cases in which policy enforcement is necessary.

"It's important to us that the stories you see on Facebook are authentic and meaningful," added Mosseri. "We're excited about this progress, but we know there's more to be done. We're going to keep working on this problem for as long as it takes to get it right.

Facebook is also looking for a head of its news partnerships division, established to collaborate with news outputs to ensure better quality of content shared on the platform.

13/12/2016: Facebook seeks head of news partnerships 

Facebook is advertising for a 'head of news partnerships' whose remit will include overseeing and managing its news partnerships team.

In the job advert the company said: "Facebook is seeking an experienced news executive to lead Global News Partnerships, serving as the company's leading representative with news organisations worldwide. The goal of the News Partnerships team is to help publishers and journalists understand how to reach and engage their audiences, and to innovate with new technologies." 

The social media giant is currently trying to implement ways to tackle the proliferation of fake news within the platform. Critics have accused Facebook of spreading fake US election-related stories that might have influenced voters and facilitated Trump's victory.

Facebook's chief executive Mark Zuckerberg denied that fake news might have influenced the US elections, and said the vast majority of news posts on the platform are authentic.

In a Facebook post published a month ago, Zuckerberg wrote: "After the election, many people are asking whether fake news contributed to the result, and what our responsibility is to prevent fake news from spreading. These are very important questions and I care deeply about getting them right."

The company is now introducing strategies that enable news to be more effectively monitored with the aim of improving the quality of content shared on Facebook.

In addition to detection systems, allowing users to flag suspicious posts, and a change in the algorithms ranking its content, Facebook also established a news partnerships team, which will collaborate with news outlets and oversee news stories shared on the platform.

Facebook is now looking for a head of this division, who will manage the team's output and represent Facebook's role in the news ecosystem publicly. 

The ideal candidate is described as having at least 20 years of experience in news "with a strong track-record and understanding across the business."

21/11/2016: Chrome plugin detects fake Facebook stories

A Chrome plugin that warns users news stories on Facebook could be fake set tongues wagging this weekend, with some users reporting it was the first stage in Mark Zuckerberg's plans to stamp out made up stories on the site.

Although the B.S Detector was later found to be a Chrome browser plugin, it was at first reported by TechCrunch to be a beta version of the social network's fake news story detector.

Users reported seeing the message, “This website is not a reliable news source. Reason: Classification Pending,” on some news stories, while others said they were presented with a red message above Facebook news feed stories stating the content was "State-Sponsored News."

Before updating its original news story revealing that it was, in fact, the work of a third party that had developed a plugin, the news source reported that the flags flashed up and then disappeared when the page was reloaded, suggesting it wasn't content every Facebook user was seeing.

The website said perhaps Facebook was taking the approach of blocking whole sites that listed questionable news stories rather than individual news stories.

However, after evidently discovering the flags were generated by a plugin that is used to detect stories that could be fake, it wrote: "The feature appears to be an implementation of the Chrome plugin B.S. Detector, which some users took as a test by Facebook itself. We’ll continue to investigate but for now, it looks like this is not a Facebook feature."

21/11/2016: Zuckerberg unveils spam-hunting algorithms

After denying Facebook had a problem with fake news stories, the company's founder Mark Zuckerberg has now revealed the measures the company will take to ensure news is always factual.

“We’ve made significant progress, but there is more work to be done,” Zuckerberg wrote in a blog post on the social network. "Historically, we have relied on our community to help us understand what is fake and what is not."

Although the company will continue to take signals from its users about what's real and what's not, it will also implement some of its own parameters in order to stamp out the fakes.

The first step it will take is to introduce better algorithms to detect what's fake and what's not. "The most important thing we can do is improve our ability to classify misinformation. This means better technical systems to detect what people will flag as false before they do it themselves," Zuckerberg said.

The company will make it easier for people to report stories as misinformed and it will introduce third-party verification, working with companies that do this as their main bread and butter and then flagging the stories as potentially unreal with labels and warnings to people who read them. Facebook will also work with journalists to get their input.

"A lot of misinformation is driven by financially motivated spam. We're looking into disrupting the economics with ads policies like the one we announced earlier this week, and better ad farm detection." Zuckerberg continued.

The final part of Facebook's plan to eradicate fake news stories will be to ramp up the quality of related news stories underneath other stories in the news feed to ensure it's showing only high-quality news stories.

"Some of these ideas will work well, and some will not," Zuckerberg finished. "But I want you to know that we have always taken this seriously, we understand how important the issue is for our community and we are committed to getting this right."

15/11/2016: Google and Facebook crack down on fake news sites

After claims that fake news circulating on Google and Facebook contributed to Donald Trump's shock election win last week, the two companies are now taking steps to block ads on phoney websites.

The move follows heavy criticism of Facebook for an alleged lack of oversight during the US presidential election, in which false news reports were allowed to spread to potentially undecided voters. The claim is that many of these stories gave Trump and unfair advantage, something that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has since rejected.

Now Facebook and Google have announced they will be revising advertising policies to help limit the spread of 'fake news'. Google is currently making changes to block ad content on websites engaged in spreading misleading stories, to starve them of revenue.

"We do not integrate or display ads in apps or sites containing content that is illegal, misleading or deceptive, which includes fake news," added Facebook in a statement to Reuters. The company added that it would continue to vet publishers to catch fake stories.

A report by BuzzFeed News suggests that Facebook has deployed an unofficial task force made up of "more than dozens" of employees to deal with the issue of fake news.

A source inside the task force told BuzzFeed the company was well aware that fake news was a problem for the election, which is particularly damning given Zuckerberg's public statements to the contrary.

"Mark Zuckerberg knows, and those of us at the company know, that fake news ran wild on our platform during the entire campaign season," said an anonymous member of the task force.

However, blocking ads will not deal with the problem of hoax news stories appearing in the Google News feed. In the last few days a search for 'final election count' would direct users to a website that claimed Trump had won the popular vote, despite votes still being counted and showing Clinton with a slight lead.

The changes instead will simply limit financial support for websites choosing to publish inaccurate news. Google's AdSense places text ads on millions of sites within its network, providing many with a major source of revenue.

"Moving forward, we will restrict ad serving on pages that misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information about the publisher, the publisher's content, or the primary purpose of the web property," said Google, in a statement to Reuters.

A recent BuzzFeed News report found that small publishers in Macedonia were taking AdSense revenue by creating articles on fake news websites, many of which were pro-Trump, that were then shared across social media.

14/11/2016: Facebook will take action against fake election news

Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg has said he will work with staff to ensure fake news stories aren't distributed through the social networks.

Although 99% of the news posted on Facebook is genuine, he said, the other 1% may not be the truth and this is a problem, he wrote on his Facebook page. However, he is still adamant made up news stories weren't responsible for Donald Trump being voted president in the US election.

"Only a very small amount is fake news and hoaxes," Zuckerberg said. "The hoaxes that do exist are not limited to one partisan view, or even to politics," he added. News stories related to the election last week, in his opinion, were not likely to have changed the result one way or the other.

"That said, we don't want any hoaxes on Facebook. Our goal is to show people the content they will find most meaningful, and people want accurate news," he added. "We have already launched work enabling our community to flag hoaxes and fake news, and there is more we can do here. We have made progress, and we will continue to work on this to improve further."

An increasing number of people around the world use Facebook as their main source of news and this makes it even more important for the company to ensure any news is factual.

However, the act of identifying whether news is true or not is not an easy task. Any news that is flagged up as being fake will need to be carefully scrutinised, he said, and the company must tread carefully.

"Identifying the 'truth' is complicated. While some hoaxes can be completely debunked, a greater amount of content, including from mainstream sources, often gets the basic idea right but some details wrong or omitted," he wrote.

"An even greater volume of stories express an opinion that many will disagree with and flag as incorrect even when factual."

11/11/2016: Zuckerberg: Fake Facebook news didn't help Trump win

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg yesterday denied that his social network helped Donald Trump win the US election.

In an interview at the Techonomy conference in California, Zuckerberg said fake news on Facebook could not have influenced the outcome of the presidential election.

He said: "Personally, I think the idea that fake news on Facebook - it's a very small amount of the content - to think it influenced the election in any way is a pretty crazy idea."

He added that if fake news were shared, it was likely that both candidates adopted this strategy.

After Trump's win, Fortune reported the views of critics who believed fake news on Facebook played a role in the US election outcome.

Facebook has about 1.79 billion users of all political affiliations. During the interview, which was carried out by David Kirkpatrick, author of the book The Facebook effect, Zuckerberg highlighted the variety of backgrounds populating the Facebook community.

"Even if 90% of your friends are Democrats, probably 10% are Republicans," he said. "Even if you live in some state or country you will know some people in another state, another country. That means that the information you are getting through the social system is going to be inherently more diverse than you would have gotten through news stations."

Zuckerberg's interview took place two days after Trump won the election, despite Hillary Clinton winning more votes overall.

He said: "Voters make decisions based on their lived experience. There is a profound lack of empathy in asserting that the only reason someone would have voted the way they did is because they saw fake news. If you believe that, then I don't think you internalised the message that Trump voters are trying to send in this election."

Zuckerberg did not, however, state what message he was referring to.

This is not the first time that Facebook is accused of spreading fake news. In August, Facebook substituted its team of news curators with algorithms that automatically select stories to place in its Trending News section.

This could have led to false news being selected without them being verified. Facebook hence introduced a new 'review team', to try and solve this problem.

In the interview, Zuckerberg admitted that a lot still had to be done to improve the quality of news that reaches the public, but he dismissed the idea that fake news could influence voters to this extent.

Just a few months ago, Reuters reported that Facebook, alongside other social media and technology platforms such as Twitter, joined a group called First Draft Coalition, whose goal is to tackle fake news and produce more trustworthy information.

Source: itpro

MARI themes

KZMZ. Powered by Blogger.