Google, Facebook, Twitter have to do more to fight fake news: EU

As its latest report showed a lack of progress in some areas

Reuters April 23, 2019
Facebook, Google and Twitter logos are seen in this combination photo from Reuters files. PHOTO: REUTERS

BRUSSELS: Google, Facebook and Twitter have to do more to tackle fake news ahead of key European Parliament elections next month, the European Commission said on Tuesday, as its latest report showed a lack of progress in some areas.

The monthly reports follow a pledge made by the tech giants and advertising trade bodies in October last year to combat the spread of fake news and avoid more heavy-handed regulations.

EU on fake news alert as continent prepares to vote

The EU has warned of foreign interference during campaigning for the European Parliament elections and national elections in Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Poland, Portugal and Ukraine in recent and coming months.

“Further technical improvements, as well as sharing of methodology and data sets for fake accounts, are necessary to allow third-party experts, fact-checkers and researchers to carry out an independent evaluation,” the EU executive said.

The Commission said Google had made insufficient progress in defining issue-based advertising. The report covered actions taken by the companies in March.

Facebook has 'new tools' against EU election meddling

It said Facebook, which took down eight coordinated inauthentic behavior networks originating in North Macedonia, Kosovo and Russia, failed to disclose whether these affected EU users.

Twitter also fell short because it did not provide details on its measures against spam and fake accounts and also did not report on any action to improve the scrutiny of ad placements.

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