If you spent any time browsing Facebook or Google during the recent election cycle, you probably came across some fake news stories.
A number of websites tried to make money off clicks to stories with shocking (and inaccurate) headlines. These included stories like one about Hillary Clinton spending $200 million on an estate in the Maldives. Another claimed President-elect Donald Trump called Republicans the “dumbest group of voters” back in 1998.
Now, people are criticizing sites like Google and Facebook for allowing fake news like this to spread and potentially impact the outcome of the election. So both platforms are working to put a stop to it by wiping out potential ad revenue for those fake news sites.
Is User-Generated Content Trustworthy?
Problems like this continue to arise for companies that deal mainly with user-generated content. But is user-generated content trustworthy? Making sure it is means that Facebook and Google, and any other online platforms that may deal with similar issues, are going to have to get creative to make sure information that users obtain remains reliable.
In the end, Google and Facebook fake news issues come down to customer experience. If users can’t rely on the information being shared in Google searches or in Facebook news feeds, will they continue to turn to them? And if not, what will happen to the ad revenue these companies depend upon and the advertisers that depend upon them to reach users?
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