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Instagram, Facebook to Remove Vaccine Misinformation Content: Report

Since both the social networking platforms are heavily used by advertisers, ads found to include fake news on vaccinations would be rejected outright

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Instagram
Instagram app logo is displayed on a mobile screen in Los Angeles. VOA

As part of their effort to reduce the spread of “vaccine hoaxes” on its platform, Facebook and its photo-messaging app Instagram will no longer allow advertisements that include misinformation about vaccines.

The company has decided to take action against accounts which are promoting vaccine hoaxes that have been publicly identified by the World Health Organisation and Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, US.

“We want to give people more accurate information from expert organisations about vaccines at the top of results for related searches, on Pages discussing the topic, and on invitations to join groups about the topic,” Monika Bickert, Vice President, Global Policy Management, Facebook wrote in a blog-post on Thursday.

As part of the initiative, the Facebook Pages that spread misinformation about vaccinations in News Feed and Search would not be included in recommendations or predictions.

facebook
Facebook: The platform allows for different types of content, which makes it ideal for diverse, interactive and entertaining content.

On Instagram, recommended content on vaccinations that could contain wrong information would not show up in the Explore tab and hashtag pages.

Since both the social networking platforms are heavily used by advertisers, ads found to include fake news on vaccinations would be rejected outright.

Also Read- Google Rolls out ‘Continued Conversations’ Feature on its Google Assistant

“For ad accounts that continue to violate our policies, we may take further action, such as disabling the ad account,” Bickert said.

“We are exploring ways to share educational information about vaccines when people come across misinformation on this topic,” she added. (IANS)

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Instagram Removes IGTV Shortcut Button Due to Lack of Use

It also said social media media platforms would extend end-to-end encryption from WhatsApp to include Instagram Direct and all of Facebook Messenger, though it could take years to complete, TechCrunch reports

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Instagram
Instagram app logo is displayed on a mobile screen in Los Angeles. VOA

Facebook-owned Instagram has removed the IGTV shortcut button from the top right corner of the app’s home screen because not enough people are interacting with it.

Instagram launched IGTV in 2018 in an effort to compete with YouTube, but then TikTok came along. Before IGTV, Instagram had only allowed people post videos that were 60 seconds or shorter.

Almost seven million of Instagram’s one billion-plus users have downloaded its standalone IGTV app in the 18 months since launch. For reference, TikTok received 1.15 billion downloads in the same period since IGTV launched, TechCrunch reports.

“Very few are clicking into the IGTV icon in the top right corner of the home screen in the Instagram app… We always aim to keep Instagram as simple as possible, so we’re removing this icon based on these learnings and feedback from our community,” the report quoted a Facebook spokesperson.

Instagram, Shopping, US
Instagram, which, according to Statista, has 69 million users in India, is currently testing direct shopping in the US and plans to bring it to more markets in the future. Pixabay

Additionally, Instagram has started testing its direct messaging feature to its desktop site, meaning now one can finally keep up with their conversations from browser.

Facebook’s plans to allow Instagram DMs over the web were first revealed last year by noted app leaker Jane Manchun Wong.

Also Read: Electric Vehicle Maker Tesla Denies Driver Complaints of Sudden Unintended Acceleration: Report

With the upcoming update, users will be able to create chats from the profile screen via a newly added “message” button and one may also able to share posts to others via DM as well as receive notifications on desktop if the browser supports it.

It also said social media media platforms would extend end-to-end encryption from WhatsApp to include Instagram Direct and all of Facebook Messenger, though it could take years to complete, TechCrunch reports. (IANS)