Facebook targets 30,000 fake France accounts before election

Facebook targets 30,000 fake France accounts before election
Republican guards, right, line up in the courtyard of the presidential Elysee Palace, in Paris, Friday, April 14, 2017. The two-round presidential election is set for April 23 and May 7. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

Facebook says it has targeted 30,000 fake accounts linked to France ahead of the country's presidential election, as part of a worldwide effort against misinformation.

The company said Thursday it's trying to "reduce the spread of material generated through inauthentic activity, including spam, misinformation, or other deceptive content that is often shared by creators of fake accounts."

It said its efforts "enabled us to take action" against the French accounts and that it is removing sites with the highest traffic.

Facebook and French media are also running fact-checking programs in France to combat misleading information, especially around the campaign for the two-round April 23-May 7 presidential election.

European authorities have also pressured Facebook and Twitter to remove extremist propaganda or other postings that violate European hate speech or other laws.

Facebook ramped up its efforts against the spread of false news and misinformation on its service in December, a month after the U.S. presidential election. The company said at the time that it will focus on the "worst of the worst" offenders and partner with outside fact-checkers and news organizations to sort honest news reports from made-up stories.

It was accused of allowing the spread of false news in the months leading up to the U.S. election, which critics said may have helped sway the results in favor of Donald Trump. Since December, the company has broadened its efforts beyond the U.S.

Last week, it launched a resource to help users spot false news in 14 countries including the U.S., France and Germany. It's a notification, available for a few days, that leads users to a list of tips for spotting false news and ways to report it.

Facebook's other efforts include participating with other companies and tech industry leaders to establish a "news integrity" nonprofit organization to promote news literacy and increase the public's trust in journalism. A nascent Facebook Journalism Project , meanwhile, is a lofty effort to work with news organizations to develop products, provide tools for journalists and generally promote trust in news.

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Apr 14, 2017
All that worked on our "poorly-educated", just like Trump wanted, and the Russians planned.

They saw how easy it was to fool and manipulate the goobers, and did it just like Baby Bush and Cheney.

Will it work in France? So far, it is doing so, with extremists leading.

gkam, just a personal observation, but I get the distinct impression that part of Russia/GOP strategy is divide and conquer. It is in their interest to make the two sides hate one another because that further isolates the brainwashed reducing their chances of "seeing the light." I'm a hypocrite, still so angry at my family I can barely bring myself to email them, but I'm trying to get past that for everyone's good.

You may wish to see the documentary "The Brainwashing of my Father." It is on Amazon. I think the GOP brainwashing campaign dating back to the 1970's or 80's is part of the puzzle of what weakened so many people's thinking to the point that they surrendered their country to oligarchs in the US and Russia. Extremist religious thinking is probably another piece of the puzzle. Add in fear of terrorism, war, the economy, ecological catastrophe... no wonder many are dazed and confused to the point of being a danger to themselves and the world.

Apr 15, 2017
All that worked on our "poorly-educated", just like Trump wanted, and the Russians planned.
Will it work in France? So far, it is doing so, with extremists leading.

Yeah? No. French will vote with, in their minds, the problems the country encounters, how people views their politicians, what those politicians did and said, and so on.
Extremists began to be tempting since the end of the 90's, with the rise of problems regarding immigration. The World Trade Center event gave them an even bigger boost, leading to the far right wing scoring more than ever. After that, it slightly lowered itself due to the right wing showing more aggressivity, and since both the right and left wing are seen as both corrupted AND incompetent, noone wants to trust them anymore.
Three parties are leading: Macron's undirectional economical stance, Le Pen's far right "patriotism", and Melenchon's far left fight for a new constitution.
Due to uneducated people? No. Keep that at home.

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