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Google rolls out fact check tool for global search results

Fri 7 Apr 2017

Google Fake News

Google has announced the global launch of its fact-checking tool which flags fake news in search results, in an attempt to tackle the rise of misinformation online.

According to an official blog post, the search engine giant will use sources such as PolitiFact and Snopes when a user enters a search relating to a claim. The listing will display the claim itself, along with who said it and whether it is true or not.

Google first tested the fact-checking feature in October 2016, with a particular focus on Google News results in the U.S. and the UK. This latest announcement now marks a wider rollout of the tool.

Information will not be provided on every search, Google noted, and there may be instances where different publishers checked the same claim and reached different conclusions.

The company added that it was not checking the facts itself but presenting users with the details so that they can make more informed judgements.

‘Even though differing conclusions may be presented, we think it’s still helpful for people to understand the degree of consensus around a particular claim and have clear information on which sources agree,’ said Google.

Publishers looking to be included in the new feature must be ‘algorithmically determined to be an authoritative source of information.’ Content must also adhere to the Google News Publisher criteria for fact checks, as well as the Google News General Guidelines.

Google’s move to fight back against the growing problem of fake news comes amid the debate around internet giants’ not doing enough to prevent the issue.

Facebook now has its own fact-checking feature which tells users who are about to share a post whether the claims included in the content are ‘disputed’. The social media giant has also released an education feature which aims to help users identify questionable posts.


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