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Good news: Facebook is going to start removing fake news stories from your news feed

No more hoaxes clogging up your news feed.

ONE OF THE most irritating features of your Facebook news feed is the sheer amount of fake news stories that can clog up your timeline.

And we don’t mean stories from Waterford Whispers or The Onion.

We mean this sort of thing.

nationalreport-630x202 Source: National Report

Or this.

mcodnalds-587x500 Source: DailyBuzzLive

Such stories originate from so-called “satire” sites and tend to be shared widely on Facebook. For example, that McDonald’s story was shared 115,000 times on Facebook.

Now Facebook has announced that it is taking measures to ensure that hoax news stories are weeded out of your timeline.

In a blog post published yesterday, the website outlined plans to limit the amount of such stories seen by users.

Today’s update to News Feed reduces the distribution of posts that people have reported as hoaxes and adds an annotation to posts that have received many of these types of reports to warn others on Facebook.

If loads of people report an article as containing false information, such articles will receive “reduced distribution” and come with a disclaimer.

Posts that receive lots of reports will be annotated with a message warning people that many others on Facebook have reported it.

The site assured users that actual satire news sites such as The Onion or Waterford Whispers will not be affected by this measure.

We’ve found from testing that people tend not to report satirical content intended to be humorous, or content that is clearly labeled as satire. This type of content should not be affected by this update.

Phew.

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About the author:

Amy O'Connor

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