Social media giant Facebook has announced a new partnership with Big Cabal Media and Comic Republic to launch a new campaign against fake news in Nigeria.
Dubbed #NoFalseNewsZone, the educational campaign aimed at helping individuals identify fake news and educate them on how to minimize the spread of false information across the west African country.
Speaking to Nigeria’s publication Guardian Nigeria, Facebook’s Corporate Communications Manager for Anglophone West Africa, Oluwasola Obagbemi, said, Facebook is committed to the wellbeing of individuals and communities.
“We are super excited to be working with Big Cabal Media and Comic Republic to launch #NoFalseNewsZone in Nigeria,” he said.
Speaking on the partnership, Big Cabal Media CEO, Tomiwa Aladekomo, said
“The world is increasingly relying on sourcing for information from digital news outlets and social media platforms. The consequences of false news are glaring and especially painful to those who fall victim. Big Cabal Media is passionate about connecting people to accurate news sources and is excited to work with Facebook on its #NoFalseNewsZone campaign.”
“As more people spend time on their screens, consuming news and information on social media, service providers must become more socially responsible to combat misinformation on their platforms as effectively as possible. I am pleased to be working with Facebook, a company that has taken the bold step to use the longest and most relevant art form to tell the story of misinformation to drive the desired attitudinal change,” Jide Martin, CEO of Comic Republic added.
This announcement comes at a time when the spread of fake news on the internet is becoming a cause of great concern for governments, policymakers, and even organizations. Social media companies have also in recent days been urged to extend fake news watch.
In 2016, Facebook partnered with fact-checking organizations – ABC News, AP, FactCheck.org, Politifact, and Snopes, to flag and rank-down fake news. In 2018, it also announced a new partnership with Africa Check; Africa’s first independent fact-checking organisation and AFP, to launch its first Africa Fact-Checking programme in Kenya. The programme helps asses the accuracy of news in the country and also help reduce the spread of misinformation, whilst improving the quality of news people find on its platform.
Even with this, the company has been accused of spreading fake news more than any other social media platform according to a study published in the journal Nature: Human Behavior last year.