Don't Be Fooled by Covid-19 Carpetbaggers

Don't Be Fooled by Covid-19 Carpetbaggers

One story of a suspected Covid-19 opportunist involves Aaron Ginn, a Silicon Valley technologist whose five minutes of fame arrived in March after he wrote a contrarian essay proposing that evidence didn’t support the “hysteria” over the consequences of the pandemic, that the problem might be sorta bad, but not really, really bad.

WhatsApp Is at the Center of Coronavirus Response

WhatsApp Is at the Center of Coronavirus Response

For the 2 billion of those people who also use the encrypted communication service WhatsApp, now more than ever is a time for calling, messaging, and seeking trustworthy information.Cathcart says WhatsApp's priority, even more so during the pandemic, is to elevate accurate information and support fact-checking organizations around the world.

The Coronavirus Outbreak Is a Petri Dish for Conspiracy Theories

The Coronavirus Outbreak Is a Petri Dish for Conspiracy Theories

Conspiracy theories about the Wuhan coronavirus, which range from believing the disease is a bioweapon to the result of eating bat soup, are playing an ancient chord.Falsehoods about coronavirus fall into two major categories: conspiracy theories about the origins of the illness and misinformation about miracle cures.

YouTube Will Police Political Videos More Closely

YouTube Will Police Political Videos More Closely

YouTube said it will also bar videos that have been manipulated or doctored to deceive users, including content that “has been technically manipulated to make it appear that a government official is dead.” That rule would have removed videos supporting conspiracy theories such as one that took root last year suggesting that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was secretly dead.

Today's Cartoon: Airplane Mode

Today's Cartoon: Airplane Mode

This week WIRED is publishing a series on parenting —from surveilling our teens to helping our kids navigate fake news and misinformation.Every weekday, WIRED publishes a new cartoon about the worlds of science and technology.

The UN Warns Against the Global Threat to Election Integrity

The UN Warns Against the Global Threat to Election Integrity

A new United Nations-sponsored report offers one of the most comprehensive overviews of the challenges to global electoral integrity posed by the onslaught of misinformation, online extremism, and social media manipulation campaigns, and calls for a series of reforms from platforms, politicians, and international governing bodies.

Twitter Wants to Let Users Limit Who Replies. Here’s Why

Twitter Wants to Let Users Limit Who Replies. Here’s Why

“The philosophical approach we took here is, when you start a conversation, as the author of a tweet you should have a little more control over the replies to that tweet,” Beykpour said.

Paid Political Ads Are Not the Problem. Our Perceptions Are

Paid Political Ads Are Not the Problem. Our Perceptions Are

Moreover, very little of the IRA’s spending was on traditional political advertising: The Senate report notes that only about 5 percent of the Russian ads users saw prior to the presidential election actually referenced Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump directly.

Facebook's Plan for 2020 Is Too Little, Too Late, Critics Say

Facebook's Plan for 2020 Is Too Little, Too Late, Critics Say

Among the features announced Monday were new interstitials—notices that appear in front of a post—that warn users when content in their Instagram or Facebook feeds has been flagged as false by outside fact-checkers.

Why People Keep Falling for Viral Hoaxes

Why People Keep Falling for Viral Hoaxes

A years-old internet hoax warning about a new, nonexistent Instagram rule resurfaced this week—and demonstrated the staying power of even low-stakes misinformation online.If the story pushed by a meme or hoax fits in a way that feels like a coherent narrative to a critical mass of people, it’s game over, says Phillips.

A New Law Makes Bots Identify Themselves—That's the Problem

A New Law Makes Bots Identify Themselves—That's the Problem

The highly ambiguous law is tailored to address conversations that inspire purchases or sway votes, but it fails to carefully define what constitutes “influenc[ing] a vote in an election.” Is sharing legitimate news stories or voting locations a form of “influence?” After all, not all online automated accounts are malign; some are simply news or information dissemination services, while others are created by artists.

Instagram Can Find Misleading Posts—but Won’t Take Them Down

Instagram Can Find Misleading Posts—but Won’t Take Them Down

The spokesperson said Facebook’s and Instagram’s approaches to misleading posts differ in part because Instagram lacks a re-share button and the content users see in their Instagram feeds comes solely from accounts they have chosen to follow, unlike on Facebook.

Don't Praise the Sri Lankan Government for Blocking Facebook

Don't Praise the Sri Lankan Government for Blocking Facebook

After a series of bombings killed over 300 people in Sri Lanka Easter Sunday, the country’s government blocked access to social media sites including Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, and the chat app Viber, according to state media and independent organizations that monitor internet blocks.

A Wild Plan to Crowdsource the Fight Against Misinformation

A Wild Plan to Crowdsource the Fight Against Misinformation

She’s currently the director of a new group called Civic, the Coalition to Integrate Values Into the Information Commons—which she runs with former founding director of the International Fact-Checking Network, Alexios Mantzarlis—and she came to TED 2019 to lay out her vision for the coalition: to bring the power of crowdsourcing to the fight against misinformation online.

Facebook Is Changing News Feed (Again) to Stop Fake News

Facebook Is Changing News Feed (Again) to Stop Fake News

By far the biggest change to come from these announcements is the introduction of a new metric called Click-Gap, which Facebook's News Feed algorithms will use to determine where to rank a given post.

Facebook Will Crack Down on Anti-Vaccine Content

Facebook Will Crack Down on Anti-Vaccine Content

The company also said it was exploring ways to give users more context about vaccines from “expert organizations.” The decision was widely anticipated: Facebook, along with YouTube and Amazon, has faced criticism from journalists and lawmakers in recent weeks for allowing vaccine misinformation to flourish on their sites.

How Amazon's Algorithms Curated a Dystopian Bookstore

How Amazon's Algorithms Curated a Dystopian Bookstore

One has a confident-looking doctor on the cover, but the author doesn’t have an MD—a quick Google search reveals that he’s a medical journalist with the “ThinkTwice Global Vaccine Institute.” Scrolling through a simple keyword search for “vaccine” in Amazon’s top-level Books section reveals anti-vax literature prominently marked as “#1 Best Seller” in categories ranging from Emergency Pediatrics to History of Medicine to Chemistry.

Don’t Be Duped by Voting Misinformation Before the Midterms

Don’t Be Duped by Voting Misinformation Before the Midterms

There are also third-party tools supported by nonpartisan organizations like Ballotopedia, Democracy Works, and Vote411.org, which allow you to input your address and receive individualized voter information for your area.What People Are SayingThere’s a ton of misinformation out there, and it’s always evolving, but there are a few general themes that come up every election cycle.Voter FraudVoter fraud is a constant boogeyman.

How Bots Ruined Clicktivism

How Bots Ruined Clicktivism

The second, first posted at 2 am Texas time Thursday morning, was initiated by a group sympathetic to Ted Cruz’s reelection campaign (it’s still unclear who) and it was pushed via a combination of an advocacy app and some of Twitter’s own ad tools.They were amplified by a lot of real people—as well as a fair number of sketchy accounts.Anyone who’s ever run a campaign—political, advocacy, or marketing—knows that getting attention is key to winning—and that getting attention is really hard.

How to Use Social Media Responsibly During Hurricane Florence

How to Use Social Media Responsibly During Hurricane Florence

If you see a Twitter feed that you don’t know tweeting information or images, be careful before you push that along.'Matt Gertz, Media Matters for America"Make sure if you are going to repost something that the source is credible, number one, because a lot of hysteria happens," Steven Stalinksy of the Middle East Research Institute, who studies social media, told WIRED last year about how to behave online during breaking news.