Google and Facebook Decide against Placing Ads on Sites Actively Involved in Distributing Fake News


Facebook is once again caught up in the eye of the storm amid allegations that fake news and content floating on the social site played a significant role in the U.S presidential elections. However, Facebook is not alone in facing these allegations. Social media giant Google was also dragged into the conversation when its search engines displayed news about President-elect Donald Trump winning the popular vote in the U.S. presidential elections. However, it was Democratic rival Hillary Clinton, Trump’s democratic rival who was in fact leading the tally.

Jumping into damage control mode quickly, Facebook on Monday announced that it had already updated its policy for Audience Network, which features ads on mobile apps and websites, to specifically make its position on not supporting distribution of fake news clear.

In a statement, the company said “In accordance with the Audience Network Policy, we do not integrate or display ads in apps or sites containing content that is illegal, misleading or deceptive, which includes fake news.” Furthermore, the company also said that its team will step up its efforts to scrutinize potential publisher while also carefully observing current publishers to ensure complete compliance with the company’s policies.

Google on the other hand said that it plans to update its AdSense program policies which will help in preventing its ads from getting placed on sites that distribute fake news.

In a statement Google said -“We’ve been working on an update to our publisher policies and will start prohibiting Google ads from being placed on misrepresentative content, just as we disallow misrepresentation in our ads policies. Moving forward, we will restrict ad serving on pages that misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information about the publisher, the publisher’s content, or the primary purpose of the web property.”

How far these moves from two of the world’s leading social powers pan out and help in restricting the circulation of fake news on social channels however, is somewhat of a wait and watch game for now.


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