Facebook is going to begin banning false information involving voting ahead of the US’s midterm elections next month. It’s something the company has done before, but amid growing tensions with Congress and the public, these new rules are set to be tougher and more comprehensive than those prior.
Before the 2016 elections, Facebook banned posts that provided misinformation as to where people could go to vote and at what time polls opened or closed. But in today’s announcement, the Silicon Valley giant plans to push further, banning posts that advertise false voting methods, like sending a text to vote, or posts claiming primary votes will be counted in the general election.
The company is also expanding reporting tools for other forms of voting misinformation, like posts that falsely describe the conditions of polling stations. The new tools will be made available to help users flag content for Facebook’s third-party fact-checkers to review ahead of election season.
Facebook has slowly begun to come around to removing accounts and pages that exhibit inauthentic behavior on its platform, heating up this summer when it removed around 30 pages run by individuals or groups that the company determined to influence the outcome of the last presidential election. Just this past week, the company deleted over 500 profiles that it deemed to be spreading falsehoods and exhibiting inauthentic behaviors, like using multiple accounts with similar names, and posting “massive amounts of content” in order to drive traffic to their own websites.