Facebook wants users to judge which news sources are most trustworthy

Mark Zuckerberg speaks during the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation 2016 CEO Summit in Lima Peru

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is seen on stage during a town hall at Facebook's headquarters in Menlo Park, California September 27, 2015.

How? We surveyed a diverse and representative sample of people using Facebook across the U.S. to gauge their familiarity with, and trust in, various different sources of news. It will only shift the balance of news users see towards sources that are determined to be trusted by the community.

However, the move is likely to have a huge impact on the media landscape in almost every country.

In a bid to improve the quality of news and repress the spread of fake news on the social networking site, Facebook has announced that it will rank news publishers by trustworthiness based on user feedback.

Facebook is taking another step to try to make itself more socially beneficial, saying it will boost news sources that its users rate as trustworthy in surveys.

Facebook wanted to avoid "sensationalism, misinformation and polarization".

"Social media enables people to spread information faster than ever before, and if we don't specifically tackle these problems, then we end up amplifying them", he wrote.

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Zuckerberg has said his goal for this year is to fix Facebook, whether by protecting against foreign interference and abuse or by making users feel better about how they spend time on Facebook.

We'll be working on these efforts for the rest of the year. Facebook initially proposed fighting false stories by letting users flag them.

News organisations immediately began considering how they would fare in the ranking. But it scrapped the red warning icons that would appear next to fake news stories after research suggested it has the opposite effect.

The new "trusted sources" ranking, which starts next week, would aim to "make sure the news you see is high quality" and "helps build a sense of common ground" rather than sow division, Zuckerberg said. That data will influence what others see in their news feeds.

Facebook said that ranking by trustworthiness was not meant to directly impact any specific groups of publishers based on their size or ideological rankings.

Overall, Zuckerberg says that Facebook has struggled with how to decide which news sources are widely trusted, and that the company could make the decision on its own, or ask outside experts.

Zuckerberg says that some news organizations "are only broadly trusted by their readers or watchers, and others are broadly trusted across society even by those who don't follow them directly".

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