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Facebook Will Start Prompting Users to Read Articles Before Sharing

There's a lot Facebook needs to do stop fake news.
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Facebook has been putting in the work to make our News Feeds a better place. Their latest move? A prompt for users that share unread links. The feature is part of Facebook's plans to fight the spread of fake news, using three key areas: "disrupting economic incentives because most false news is financially motivated, building new products to curb the spread of false news, and helping people make more informed decisions when they encounter false news."

The prompt will alert users (we're talking the kind that doesn't care to read the context of articles and just read headlines) by telling them that they're about to share an article without opening it. Along with the prompt, users will be told that sharing articles without reading them may mean missing key facts.

Facebook announced the move by saying: "Starting today, we’re testing a way to promote more informed sharing of news articles. If you go to share a news article link you haven’t opened, we’ll show a prompt encouraging you to open it and read it, before sharing it with others."

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The feature is currently in testing mode but seeing as more and more social media platforms are doing the same, it's probably going to be rolled out to everyone very soon. In 2020, Twitter introduced a similar prompt that reminds users that headlines don't tell the full story.

Still, there's a lot Facebook needs to do stop fake news. What does the future look like? Less political it seems. Back in February, Facebook announced that it was reducing inflammatory content by putting out less political subject matter on News Feeds.

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Paolo Chua
Paolo Chua is the Associate Style Editor of Esquire Philippines.
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