Latin America

LOOK: Facebook blocks websites believed to be peddling fake news

Bonz Magsambol

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LOOK: Facebook blocks websites believed to be peddling fake news
At least 10 websites are already blocked on the social media platform

MANILA, Philippines – Facebook now prevents users from posting links to websites which are deemed to be spreading false stories. 

A quick check of the 29 websites which the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines earlier identified as peddling fake news showed that 10 are already blocked on the social media platform. (READ: CBCP guide lists websites peddling fake news)

A prompt will pop up on Facebook whenever a user tries to share something from these websites.

The prompt reads: The content you’re trying to share includes link that our security system detected to be unsafe. Please remove this link to continue.”

These websites are:

  • Classified Trends –
  • Duterte News Info –
  • Extreme Readers –
  • Guard1an –
  • FilipiNews PH –
  • Kalye Pinoy –
  • Leak News PH –
  • Media ni Duterte –
  • PinoyWorld –
  • TahoNews –

Two of these websites are known for publishing stories that defend President Rodrigo Duterte: Duterte News Info and Media ni Duterte.

Here are some of the screenshots of the blocked websites taken on Saturday, April 14:

This latest development comes days after Facebook announced its partnership with social news organizations Rappler and Vera Files for a third-party fact-checking program.

The fact-checking initiative is in line with a 3-part framework to improve the quality and authenticity of stories in people’s news feeds.

Aside from being able to flag potential false news stories, people will also be informed if a story they shared on Facebook has been rated fake.

For pages that frequently share false stories, their post distribution will be reduced, and their ability to monetize and advertise will likely be removed.

Rappler CEO Maria Ressa hailed the partnership with Facebook: “It’s what journalists do, and we’re happy to work with Facebook to help create a safe and sane public space for critical thinking and debate.”

Senator Bam Aquino lauded the fact-checking program, saying it showed Facebook’s effort to stop the proliferation of false news. –

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Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol covers the Philippine Senate for Rappler.