Facebook Begins To Label Media Pages That Are Controlled By Their Government

The social media network, Facebook has started to label media outlets that are controlled by their government. The social media platform will label those media pages that are entirely or partially under the editorial control of their respective governments. The company made this new change following an announcement of the policy last year.

Facebook will start labeling ads from these media outlets later during 2020. The company will also start banning media outlets from advertising inside the United States that are controlled by a state. Facebook stated that the social media network is labeling these media outlets because they combine the influence of a media organization with the critical backing of a government. Facebook platform believes that users should know that if the news they are consuming comes from a media organization that might be entirely or partially controlled by a government.

The social media giant will label ‘state-controlled media’ pages based on a number of factors. These factors include information about the ownership as well as funding of a media outlet, the level of transparency around the sources of these media outlets, and if accountability systems such as corrections policy exist or not. If Facebook has labeled your media page as state-controlled media, you can appeal with evidence that your media outlet operates independently, including laws protect editorial freedom as well as a reliable judgment from an outside source.

Else ways, the company will include a notice to the media outlet’s pages globally. The label added by Facebook on the media pages will appear on News Feed posts in the United States. Users can already view these labels on some pages as well as posts of media outlets. You will see labels on pages and posts from those media outlets that been blamed to spread propaganda in the United States. These media outlets include Sputnik and RT, and both of these outlets are now considered as state-controlled media, along with other media outlets such as China Daily.

Facebook is not the first platform to label state-controlled media outlets, Google’s YouTube experimented with labeling new channels funded by their governments back in the year 2018. However, enforcement of this initiative has been inconsistent by YouTube.


The company states that those outlets controlled by their governments ‘rarely’ advertise in the United States. However, Facebook is banning these advertisements ‘out of an abundance of caution to offer another layer of security against different sorts of foreign influence in the public discussions ahead of the upcoming Nov 2020 presidential election in the United States.’

Facebook already removes ‘inauthentic’ pages that are found to be spreading propaganda or misleading information across the platform. Facebook’s labeling tool is part of a broader effort to protect the 2020 United States presidential election’s integrity. But, the company has still faced criticism for deciding not to fact-check posts made by politicians (including Donald Trump’s post) across Facebook’s platform.



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