Facebook parenting groups are being targeted for Misinformation by Extremists

Facebook is one of the biggest social media platforms where people interact with each other. The actual meaning of social media is to socialize and meet new people and that is what Facebook provides to its users. People find new people, they talk and become friends and they do a lot of stuff together which is great if you ask us.

Millennials and Gen Z have adopted social media platforms and are rocking the internet. With a lot of groups available on the website, they interact and exchange information amongst themselves. In the last few years, we’ve seen that many parenting groups have surfaced on the internet where parents interact and share information about various aspects regarding health and medications which is quite useful if you’re new to the parenting thing.

Although Facebook mostly has a positive impact on the community, we cannot neglect the dark side it has. Although on the surface, everything seems to be perfect, there are a few issues that just manage to go unnoticed and well researchers at the George Washington University were able to point them out.

It was observed that in 2020, many of the parenting groups became a target of extremist users who were spreading fake news and rumors against the Covid virus and its vaccines. These people were anti-vaccine and were spreading misinformation among parents as to how harmful these vaccines are and that they contain side effects that might not be worth the risk.

These things are usually monitored by a particular person known as the ‘Moderator” who keeps the community in check and looks out for instances like this so that he can take action against the users who were spreading the false information.

As some of these groups are very small, these extremist users were hard to track which is why these movements went unnoticed.

Researcher Neil Johnson, who is a professor at the university, shared a few concerns in a blog post. He said that, “We observed many Facebook groups where these practices were being conducted and our results tell us that these things were not being monitored by any moderator, which raises a lot of questions. These things are dangerous and hence should be addressed immediately.”

They even came up with a solution to this problem which we feel that Facebook should look into; “It is a pretty simple mathematical theory which understands the system and its workings and then after gathering all the information predicts a strategy which would help them out in controlling these points.” The researchers are determined that their model can work on every social media platform and not just Facebook.

It was concluded that even though these users might continue to spread false information all around the web, it is the responsibility of parents to further check up on these theories. They should at least consult with their doctor so that they can be sure if the information that they are getting on the internet is true or not.

Read next: Global Economy Shrank by $5.5 Billion in 2021 Due to Internet Censorship
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