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Facebook will show pop-ups before you share articles about COVID-19

The social network has struggled to fight viral misinformation about the pandemic.
Karissa Bell, @karissabe
August 12, 2020
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Facebook will show pop-ups before users share coronavirus articles.
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Facebook is taking yet another step to make it harder for bad information about the coronavirus pandemic to spread. The social network will begin surfacing a new pop-up that appears any time a user shares a link to content about COVID-19. 

The notification will include a link to the company’s coronavirus information center, and include details about how old the article is and when it was first shared. Facebook rolled out a similar update, that surfaces similar warnings when users share old news articles, in June.

By adding an extra layer of context, Facebook is hoping to slow the spread of outdated or less credible information (official health organizations like the WHO are exempted from the notifications.) “The notification will help people understand the recency and source of the content before they share it,” Facebook writes in an update. 

Despite its efforts to elevate content from authoritative sources, Facebook has struggled to tamp down viral misinformation about the pandemic. The company revealed Tuesday that it had removed 7 million posts about the coronavirus and added fact-checking labels to 98 million more.

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