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Facebook initiates $50,000 award to fund research on fake news

Facebook initiates $50,000 award to fund research on fake news

Facebook initiates $50,000 award to fund research on fake news
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By Sanjeeban Sarkar  Jul 6, 2018 12:33 AM IST (Published)

The company has instituted the WhatsApp Research Awards to provide funding of up to $50,000 for independent research proposals.

Facebook-owned messaging service, WhatsApp, has initiated a competitive reward system to tackle the growing menace of fake news, the social media giant said in a blog post.

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The Cupertino-based company said it welcomed proposals from social science or related disciplines to gain insights into the impact of technology in the creation and propagation of fake news.
The company has instituted the WhatsApp Research Awards to provide funding of up to $50,000 for independent research proposals that are designed to be shared with WhatsApp, Facebook, and wider academic and policy-focused communities.
Fake news rose to prominence in the wake of the US presidential election in 2016. Russia has been accused of allegedly peddling fake news and initiating misinformation campaigns targeted at the core support base of US president Donald Trump.
Facebook was dragged into the maelstrom that is fake news, when it was revealed that many of these campaigns were spread on the social media platform.
The company's problems were exacerbated when the former head of Cambridge Analytica admitted that his firm had received data from the researcher at the centre of a scandal over Facebook  users' personal details, contradicting previous testimony to lawmakers.
Cambridge Analytica, which was hired by Donald Trump in 2016, has denied its work on the U.S. president's successful election campaign made use of data allegedly improperly harvested from around 87 million Facebook users.
The body is looking to explore the following themes:
  • Information processing of problematic content
  • Election related information
  • Network effects and virality
  • Digital literacy and misinformation
  • Detection of problematic behavior within encrypted systems
  • Information processing of problematic content
  • Election related information
  • Network effects and virality
  • Digital literacy and misinformation
  • Detection of problematic behavior within encrypted systems
  • The full post can be read here: 
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