Facebook, and the trouble in being everything to everyone

By The Economist online

OXFORD Dictionaries has just named “post-truth” its word of the year. The timing certainly seems apt. Among the many recriminations unfolding in the wake of the American election are darts aimed at the press which, some argue, did an inadequate job during the campaign sorting truth, from half-truth, from innuendo, from outright fabrication. Interestingly, among those groups in the crosshairs is Facebook, which is now struggling to work out what its journalistic responsibilities are in this strange new digital age.

Facebook, which has nearly 2b monthly active users, is a media goliath. Users spend much of their time at the site interacting with friends and family, or sharing photos and videos. Yet Facebook is also an increasingly important location for the publication and sharing of news. According to a study conducted by the Pew Research Centre, 44% of American adults said they get some news from Facebook. Some of that news, as it turns out, is fake….

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Category: Business and finance, Free exchange

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