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Facebook to make satire posts more obvious

April 8 (UPI) -- Facebook has announced it will start labeling posts to make satire, and the origin of other posts, more obvious.

The company has piloted adding the new labels, such as "satire page," to posts in Facebook's News Feed in the United States, along with other labels to clarify the origin of content as "public official" or "fan page," according to a Facebook statement posted to Twitter.

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The Verge reported that identifying the satire labels appeared especially important since social shares of satirical sites like The Onion or The Babylon Bee show people mistaking the satirical stories as real.

For instance, last year, then-President Donald Trump shared, apparently in earnest, a fake story about Twitter shutting down its platform to prevent negative news about then-Democratic nominee Joe Biden from Babylon Bee, a website that says its content is made up and intended for satire, USA Today reported.

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Last summer, Facebook began to apply labels to state-controlled media outlets to make it clear they "may be under influence of the government," according to Nathaniel Gleicher, Facebook's head of cybersecurity.

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As part of a wider effort to counter misinformation, Facebook removed posts from Trump in August and October spreading misinformation on the COVID-19 pandemic.

The social media company has also added more labels to posts in the last six months, including Facebook announcing in November, it would flag posts if they claimed premature victory in the presidential election, and in February, saying it would also add posts to label misinformation about climate change.

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