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Facebook Adds Disclaimer to a User’s Post Under Singapore Fake News Law

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Facebook published a correction on a user’s post Saturday following a demand from Singapore, the first time a tech giant has complied with the city-state’s law against misinformation. Authorities had ordered the social media giant to correct a post promoting an article on a fringe news site containing “scurrilous accusations” of election rigging, ramping up their use of a controversial law against misinformation. The law gives ministers powers to tell platforms to put warnings next to posts they deem false, but that activists fear could be used to curb free speech.

A post by Alex Tan — who runs anti-government website the States Times Review — had a correction notice placed below it after a government request, Facebook confirmed.

On Thursday authorities had ordered Tan to put up a correction next to his November 23 post on elections.

But Tan — who is based overseas — refused, saying he is an Australian citizen and would not comply with requests from a “foreign government”.

But after authorities ordered Facebook to put a correction next to the post, the social media giant said it had complied.

The item now appears with a label below it, stating: “Facebook is legally required to tell you that the Singapore government says this post has false information”.

It also contains a link to the government’s own fact-checking website.

“As required by Singapore law, Facebook applied a label to these posts, which were determined by the Singapore Government to contain false information,” said a Facebook spokesperson on Saturday.

“As it is early days of the law coming into effect, we hope the Singapore Government’s assurances that it will not impact free expression will lead to a measured and transparent approach to implementation.”

The government’s fact-checking website said that Tan’s article, which claims elections are rigged in Singapore to ensure the ruling party stays in power, contained “false statements of fact” and “made scurrilous accusations”.

He reacted defiantly, saying that he had reposted his article on Twitter, Google and Linkedin and calling for the government to issue correction orders to the companies.

The increased use of the law comes as speculation mounts that elections could be called within months, although a weak opposition is seen as no match for the long-ruling People’s Action Party.

Singapore used the law for the first time Monday, ordering opposition party member Brad Bowyer to correct a Facebook post authorities said could “smear the reputation” of two state investment funds.

Bowyer — a naturalised Singapore citizen originally from Britain — immediately complied.

Facebook, a major investor in Singapore that last year announced plans to build a $1billion data centre there, has its Asia headquarters in the city-state.

Singapore’s government, which regularly faces criticism for curbing civil liberties, insists the legislation is necessary to stop the spread of damaging falsehoods online.

NDTV Gadgets360.com

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Helping Prevent Discrimination in Ads that Offer Housing, Employment or Credit Opportunities.

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iscrimination has no place on Facebook, and our advertising policies have long prohibited unlawful discrimination. Over the last year, our auditors have released two progress updates on Facebook’s Civil Rights Audit and we reached a historic settlement with leading civil rights organizations. As part of the settlement, we introduced a new process for how advertisers based in the US, or trying to reach audiences in the US, can buy ads that offer housing, employment or credit opportunities. These ads are known as Special Ad Categories and are restricted from using the following targeting criteria: age, gender, ZIP code, multicultural affinity or any detailed options describing or appearing to relate to protected characteristics.The Latest News from Facebook for Business

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Facebook Brings WhatsApp Integration to Its Revamped Crisis Response Tool

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Social network giant Facebook is adding a WhatsApp button to crisis response tool, its disaster-reporting and communications feature where a user requests or offers help during a time of emergency. The tool is being used in 300 crises in more than 80 countries presently.

The new feature will allow people in affected areas to provide real-time information related to any disaster, TechCrunch.com reported on Tuesday.

Formerly, replies to requests on Facebook’s crisis response pages could only be sent with Facebook Messenger.

The update allow the social network to provide this information to state and local officials, as well as federal relief agencies such as Direct Relief and the National Alliance for Public Safety GIS Foundation.

Facebook is also expanding its Data for Good tools, using its data to provide relief organisations with information on where to distribute supplies, based on aggregated, anonymised data.

Additionally, Facebook is also updating its disaster maps to be more accurate in collaboration with agencies such as the International Displacement Monitoring Centre.

The new features will allow for photo and video sharing within the Crisis Response centre on Facebook.

Crisis Response originally developed out of a handful of features that help family, friends and communities support one another in the wake of a disaster.

NDTV Gadgets360.com

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Facebook to Allow Transfer of Photos, Videos to Google, Other Rivals

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Facebook started testing a tool on Monday that lets users move their images more easily to other online services, as it faces pressure from regulators to loosen its grip on data. The social network’s new tool will allow people to transfer their photos and videos directly to competing platforms, starting with Google Photos. The company said it will first be available to people in Ireland and will be refined based on user feedback.

The tool will then be rolled out worldwide in the first half of 2020.

US and European regulators have been examining Facebook’s control of personal data such as images as they look into whether the tech giant’s dominance is stifling competition and limiting choice for consumers. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has reacted by calling for new rules to address “data portability” and other issues.

Facebook said that as it worked on a new set of data portability tools, it had discussions with policymakers, regulators, and academics in the UK, Germany, Brazil, and Singapore to learn about which data should be portable and how to protect privacy.

The company is developing products that “take into account the feedback we’ve received and will help drive data portability policies forward by giving people and experts a tool to assess,” Steve Satterfield, director of privacy and public policy, said in a blog post.

NDTV Gadgets360.com

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