View profile

Snap back to reality — oops, there goes gravity [The Interface]

Let's say you're Facebook, and you have a fake news problem. Something you have observed is that your
November 7 · Issue #22 · View online
The Interface
Let’s say you’re Facebook, and you have a fake news problem. Something you have observed is that your own users often call out news for being fake, and you wonder whether your sophisticated machine-learning tools can use this information to identify hoaxes more quickly. 
And then ………. this happens.
A Facebook test that promoted comments containing the word fake to the top of news feeds has been criticised by users.
The trial, which Facebook says has now concluded, aimed to prioritise “comments that indicate disbelief”.
It meant feeds from the BBC, the Economist, the New York Times and the Guardian all began with a comment mentioning the word fake.
The test, which was visible only to some users, left many frustrated.
The comments appeared on a wide range of stories, from ones that could be fake to ones that were clearly legitimate. The remarks, which would appear at the top of the comments section, came from a variety of people but the one thing that they had in common was the word fake.
It turns out that pushing the word “fake” to the top of the comments on every story made every story look fake. Some have argued that in retrospect, this outcome seemed obvious. I will leave that for others to say. 
I am here to tell you only that it is hilarious.

Facebook's fake news experiment backfires - BBC News
Why were the Russian Facebook ads so strange?
How Facebook Figures Out Everyone You've Ever Met
It’s Getting Harder for Tech Companies To Deny Responsibility for Content
America’s misinformation problem, explained
Facebook’s unorthodox new revenge porn defense is to upload nudes to Facebook
The conventional wisdom is that Snap, Inc. is good at making products but bad at business, and that it will struggle to attract new users or stem its losses amid crushing competition from Facebook.
Snap reported earnings today. And the conventional wisdom turned out to be wrong — Snap is not good at making products!
Snap Will Overhaul Its App Just Nine Months After Its IPO
Snap says it's going to start paying top creators
Snap lost nearly $40 million on unsold Spectacles
Twitter is rolling out 280-character tweets around the world
Instant Articles Introduces “Monetization Tab”, With Simpler, One-Click Control for Turning on Recirculation Ads
Instagram now lets some users view bookmarked posts on the web
Facebook Messenger plugin enables cross-platform customer service
Send Money to Friends in Messenger – Now in Euros and British Pounds
Those disturbing YouTube videos for kids are a symptom of tech’s scale problem.
YouTube’s big problem has always been its algorithm, not kids programming
Silicon Valley Can’t Destroy Democracy Without Our Help
And finally ...
Loved to Death: How Instagram Is Destroying Our Natural Wonders
Talk to me
Questions? Comments? Suggestions for saving Snap? 
Did you enjoy this issue?
If you don't want these updates anymore, please unsubscribe here
If you were forwarded this newsletter and you like it, you can subscribe here
Powered by Revue