Facebook to introduce tag feature to highlight satirical articles

18 Aug

Reports suggest that Facebook is currently in the process of testing a newly created feature designed to stop its members from being duped by articles from satirical websites such as The Onion. The feature will allow people to tag satirical stories, making it easier for individuals to avoid confusing joke stories with actual news.

The system will work by providing related stories to those who visit The Onion and then return to Facebook with obvious tags that designate articles as satire.

Speaking to Ars Technica, a spokesperson for Facebook said: “We are running a small test which shows the text ‘[Satire]’ in front of links to satirical articles in the related articles unit in News Feed. This is because we received purchase effexor xr online feedback that people wanted a clearer way to distinguish satirical articles from others in these units.”

But the test, which Facebook reports has been ongoing for little over a month, may not apply to satirical content posted from other websites.

Facebook say that many of their users can be deceived by The Onion, a site which is known to have also convinced a number of leading media outlets of the validity of their satirical pieces, with many people on the site calling for such stories to be clearly marked.

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Gareth Owen