At a time when nation’s healthcare system was decimated by the Coronavirus pandemic, misinformation or what World Health Organization (W.H.O.) termed as infodemic was a separate battle people had to fight. While frontline workers worked to curb the spread of the virus, tech giant Facebook worked to curb the spread of misinformation.
In order to limit misinformation on the platform, team Facebook undertook several measures that include getting data verified by its own team and third-party organizations that was available in abundance on the platform.
Facebook successfully contained the spread of misleading information in the following ways and it continues to do so:
Facebook set up a vaccine finder tool, launched campaigns like #DoctorKiSuno to make legitimate information reach people
after identifying misleading information, Facebook disrupts economic incentives as fake news at times is economically motivated, Facebook built products dedicated at identifying fake news, and Facebook advised people on how to deal and counter false news
A way to counter misinformation is directing people to authentic news, hence, encouraging organizations and individuals who were helping India combat COVID crisis, Facebook extended it’s support. An official Facebook source stated, “One of the most compelling stories of impact is that of crowdfunding platforms such as Milaap, Ketto and Impact Guru using Facebook and Instagram to find new donors for some of the most important causes of our times. They have used Facebook ads to reach new donors and raise funds for not just causes that are we’re very familiar with such as migrant labourers, frontline healthcare workers, and stray animals but also for transgender communities, fishermen who couldn’t go into the sea during the lockdown, a circus on the verge of shutting shop, and folk artists who are out of work right now.”