Facebook: Network to roll out 'fake news tool' in Germany

Facebook: Network to roll out 'fake news tool' in Germany

Facebook has responded to worries of 'false news' by developing a new tool to check the facts

Monday, January 16, 2017

Facebook has announced its German users will be able to make use of a 'fake news tool' to help stop the spread of fabricated news stories. 

The rise of so-called 'fake news' had led to widespread criticism of the social network, due to claims that it influenced the 2016 US presidential election.

The new tool unveiled by Facebook will allow German users to flag up potentially false stories, which will then be passed on to a third-party fact checker. 

If the checker finds it to be unreliable, a marking will show up on users' news feeds to say the story is 'disputed'. 

The update is particularly timely for Germany, as Angela Merkel is up for re-election this year. Last week, Buzzfeed found that pages on Facebook had been posting false stories about the German Chancellor.

It was a discovery that seemed to confirm the fears of German officials that misinformation could influence the election. 

The tool will be rolled out across Germany in the coming weeks.