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Saturday October 01, 2022

Human rights group says Facebook failed to stop election lies

The group said that "despite Facebook’s self-proclaimed efforts to tackle disinformation", it was sad that all problematic ads were accepted

By Web Desk
August 18, 2022
Facebook ads open on MacBook Air. — Unsplash
Facebook ads open on MacBook Air. — Unsplash

An investigation has found that Facebook was not able to detect and expose disinformation about the 2022 election in Brazil, reported The Independent.

Human rights group Global Witness said that it published 10 advertisements with false information about the general election among which one targeted indigenous groups, telling people the incorrect voting date.

The group found it concerning that the Portugese ads were accepted from outside Brazil. Facebook even accepted payment from an account that had not been verified by Facebook’s ad authorisation process.

A senior adviser of the group said that Facebook knew very well how the platform was used to spread disinformation. 

The Global Witness report criticised Facebook also pointing out elections in other places like Kenya and recent US presidential elections. 

The adviser said that "despite Facebook’s self-proclaimed efforts to tackle disinformation", it was sad that all the problematic ads were accepted.

The group has called on the social media platform to upgrade its content moderation urgently and ensure that moderators have a deep understanding of the political context of different areas. 

A Facebook spokesperson told The Independent that it removed 140,000 posts from both Instagram and Facebook in the last Brazilian elections and rejected 250,000  unauthorised political ads.

“We are deeply committed to protecting election integrity in Brazil and globally," Facebook said.