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每日英語跟讀 Ep.K529: 社群媒體巨頭打擊假消息力道減弱 Combating Disinformation Wanes at Social Media Giants

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

每日英語跟讀 Ep.K529: Combating Disinformation Wanes at Social Media Giants

YouTube, like other social media platforms, spent years expanding its efforts to tackle misinformation after the 2016 election. It hired policy experts and content moderators and invested in more technology to limit the reach of false narratives. Not anymore.


Last month, the company, owned by Google, quietly reduced its small team of policy experts in charge of handling misinformation, according to three people with knowledge of the decision. The cuts, part of the reduction of 12,000 employees by Google’s parent company, Alphabet, left only one person in charge of misinformation policy worldwide, one of the people said.


The cuts reflect a trend across the industry that threatens to undo many of the safeguards that social media platforms put in place in recent years to ban or tamp down on disinformation — like false claims about the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russian war in Ukraine or the integrity of elections around the world. Twitter, under its new owner, Elon Musk, has slashed its staff, while Meta, which owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, has shifted its focus and resources to the immersive world of the metaverse.


Faced with economic headwinds and political and legal pressure, the social media giants have shown signs that fighting false information online is no longer as high a priority, raising fears among experts who track the issue that it will further erode trust online.


“I wouldn’t say the war is over, but I think we’ve lost key battles,” said Angelo Carusone, the president of the liberal media watchdog Media Matters for America. After years of efforts, he described a mounting sense of fatigue in the struggle. “I do think we, as a society, have lost the appetite to keep battling. And that means we will lose the war.”


The companies maintain they remain diligent, but the efforts to combat false and misleading information online — which arguably peaked during the COVID pandemic and the 2020 presidential election — have waned at a time when the problem of misinformation remains as pernicious as ever with a proliferation of alternative sites competing for users.

這些公司堅稱他們仍很勤奮,但打擊網路虛假及誤導資訊的行動已有所減弱,這些假訊息在新冠疫情大流行與2020年總統大選期間達到巔峰,隨著替代網站激增且競相爭奪用戶,假訊息問題仍像以往那樣有害。Source article:

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