While Facebook has been attempting to crack down on malicious content on its platform, a new Bloomberg report said it is also worried about misinformation about the company itself.
The company has a software program called Stormchaser, which is used to detect and debunk information about Facebook, as reported by Bloomberg. The software also detects rumours that are spread on WhatsApp, an instant messaging and calling app that is owned by Facebook.
Stormchaser was developed in 2016, and has been able to track a number of rumours. It detected rumours that Facebook listens to its users and also found jokes comparing Mark Zuckerberg to an alien.
In some instances, Stormchaser shared messages to debunk misinformation about the platform.
The misinformation that Stormchaser finds is sometimes reported to users through their News Feeds. For instance, Facebook debunked a rumour in the Philippines by placing an alert on top of their newsfeeds.
The company addressed speculation that it is more interested in addressing fake news that puts itself in a bad light. A Facebook spokesperson told Bloomberg that “we didn’t use this internal tool to fight false news because that wasn’t what it was built for, and it wouldn’t have worked.”
“The tool was built with simple technology that helped us detect posts about Facebook based on keywords, so we could consider whether to respond to product confusion on our own platform. Comparing the two is a false equivalence,” the spokesperson confirmed.
This news shows that Facebook has an advantage over its users and has the ability to debunk rumours and misinformation about itself.
Earlier this year, MobileSyrup reported that Facebook said it would use a third-party fact-checker to identify false videos. It would then place a disclaimer on the content.