Two of the biggest names in tech, Alphabet’s Google and Facebook have announced that they are now clamping down on fake news on the internet by hitting bogus news sites where it hurts the most: their wallets. Google has said that they’re now working on preventing websites that misrepresent content by lies and falsehoods to use their Adsense network, which is the major income driver for false news sites.
“Moving forward, we will restrict ad serving on pages that misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information about the publisher, the publisher’s content, or the primary purpose of the web property,” Google said in a statement.
Facebook, on the other hand, has updated its advertising policies to explicitly say that they do not allow fake news apps to use their advertising network.
We do not integrate or display ads in apps or sites containing content that is illegal, misleading or deceptive, which includes fake news,” Facebook said in a statement.
Both Google and Facebook are now under fire for their inaction in allowing fake news sites to spread misinformation unabated. Their refusal to intervene in the spread of fake news websites, which some see as vehicles to spread propaganda, hate speech and misogynistic behavior has been pointed out as one of the key foundations for controversial Presidential elect’s Donald Trump’s win last November 8.
Fake news is also a big problem for local politics. Websites like Du30NewsInfo and Philippine News Portal frequently post either unconfirmed or fake news that usually go viral on Facebook.
Both Google and Facebook did not outline steps that they will take to identify fake news sites as of press time.