Health Care

As polio goal nears, Pakistan pushes against vaccine misinformation

As polio goal nears, Pakistan pushes against vaccine misinformation”

It won't be promoted through ads or recommendations, and Facebook will make it less visual in searches. Targeting options like "vaccine controversies" have also been removed from the platform, which means advertisers can no longer specifically target users that have shown interest in vaccine controversies.

The World Health Organization and US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have identified "verifiable vaccine hoaxes", Bickert said, and, "If these vaccine hoaxes appear on Facebook, we will take action against them".

The social networking giant will start downranking groups and pages that spread misinformation about vaccination on both News Feed and its search function.

Facebook reportedly would take steps to lower the rankings of anti-vaccine groups and Pages so that they appear less in recommendations, predictions, in News Feed and Search, and even in Instagram Explore or hashtag pages.

Facebook also said it would be "exploring" ways to counter false content, whenever users do come across it, with "educational information" about vaccines.

In mid-February, Facebook told USA TODAY it had "taken steps" to reduce fake health news and anti-vaxx posts and said it was in plans for making anti-vaccination content on its site less visible amid a measles outbreak that has brought to light a conversation about preventative shots.

When it discovers ads with misinformation about vaccinations, "we will reject them".

The World Health Organization recently dubbed "vaccine hesitancy" one of the top global threats of 2019, a warning punctuated by one of the worst measles outbreaks in decades, which has sickened at least 75 people across the Pacific Northwest - most of whom are unvaccinated children under 10 years old.

Federal health officials have attributed a recent spike in the number of measles cases in part to misinformation that has made some parents shun the vaccine.

One group of scientists recently published a study that found the majority of the most-viewed health stories on Facebook in 2018 were downright fake or contained significant amounts of misleading information.

Admitting that people want private, encrypted services, Zuckerberg said Facebook would become like the mobile messaging platform which is more secure with end-to-end encryption.

Previously, Pinterest and YouTube have also attempted to reduce the reach of anti-vaccine content.

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