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Accusations that Facebook likes 'fake news' are 'crap,' said Zuckerberg

Harriet Taylor

Facebook (FB) is totally against 'fake news' and misinformation, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at North Carolina A&T State University at a town hall-style event Monday.

"There have been some accusations that say that we actually want this kind of content on our service because its more content and people click on it, but that's crap," said Zuckerberg. "No-one in our community wants fake information."

"We are also victims of this and we do not want it on our service," he said. "We don't want any of it."

The event — a stop off on Zuckerberg's 2017 tour of every state in the U.S. in a bid to connect with more Americans — was live streamed on Zuckerberg's Facebook page. His comments come less than a month after the CEO posted a 6,000 word manifesto on Facebook's role in connecting disparate communities.

There are things Facebook can do to disrupt the economics of 'fake news,' like making it so that the content can't get shared, he said. The problem is that there are some things which are obviously hoaxes, but others that are less easy to categorize, he said.

"It's not always clear what is fake and what isn't," said Zuckerberg. "A lot of what people are calling fake news are just opinions that people disagree with."

Facebook must be really careful with its approach, because an important part of democracy is people being able to share things that other people are going to disagree with, he said.

"We need to make sure that we don't get to a place where we're not showing content or banning things form the service just because it hurts someone's feelings or because someone doesn't agree with it – I think that would actually hurt a lot of progress," said Zuckerberg.



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