Facebook and Instagram released a new online hub on Thursday that helps users locate information related to the 2020 election voting. Social media giants are hopeful of combating election misinformation with the aid of a tool of this sort.
These social networking sites have made it very easy for anti-social elements to post any kind of election misinformation. During the 2016 US presidential elections, Russian trolls made use of social media to post incorrect information to create a sense of divide amongst the people of the country. Facebook has also been at the receiving end for not checking the facts of the content posted by politicians, including that of President Donald Trump. The company has been trying to do away with any misinformation, including the ones related to the novel coronavirus and the upcoming elections, by connecting users to trustworthy sources.
Naomi Gleit, who is in charge of the product management and social impact at Facebook, wrote in a blog post that, “By providing clear, accurate and authoritative information to people, we will continue to reduce the ability of malicious networks to take advantage of uncertainty around the pandemic to interfere with the election.”
Facebook also plans to use this tool for handling any kind of incorrect information concerning the election results. The social platforming site told on Wednesday that it would join hands along with other tech organizations and the US Government in offering protection against election roguery. Back in June, Facebook had stated that the latest voter information center set up by the organization is an effort taken by the company to help out 4 million people with the voter registrations for the elections. The social media giant has about 2.7 billion users. It has called this effort the “largest voting information campaign in American history.”
The latest voting information center on Facebook and Instagram allows users to check if they are registered for the voting process. In case any user is not registered for the same, a link is provided that helps in completing the registration process. Information regarding mail-in voting and deadlines is also present. The voting center can be found in the menu section on Facebook and Instagram.
According to Facebook, the online hub would also contain information coming from state election officials and nonpartisan civic organizations. The hub will also persuade people to sign up as electoral workers for the state, as election staffers face issues for the same on account of the coronavirus pandemic. Facebook also plans to release another feature that would help state and local election officials notify the people regarding any election updates.
The center will house a section called “Facts About Voting” that would contain informative articles concerning election and voting. Facebook will get all of this information from the Bipartisan Policy Center-a Washington DC-based to think tank.
Last month, Facebook tagged voting-related content posted by federal officials due to which users could catch up with more information regarding the topic. The tags appeared right under the posts of Trump and Joe Biden, a Democratic presidential candidate. Users are directed towards a USA.gov website where they can locate voting information.
The Biden campaign condemned the tagging as Trump’s post had stated that voting by mail would lead to the “most CORRUPT ELECTION in our Nation’s History!”. Biden’s post said that people should “vote Donald Trump out this November.” Fact-checker Snopes falsified the claims that voting by mail would increase voter fraud.
Facebook plans on tagging posts related to voting in the US elections on its network and Instagram. All these tags would take people to the latest voting hub.
Image source: Cnet