After criticism for lack of transparency, Facebook releases a previously hidden first quarter report on most-viewed content

Fb determined to launch a transparency report for the primary quarter of 2021.
Regardless of pledges of “transparency,” the corporate held again its unique report.
The report confirmed a few of the most-viewed content material on the platform mirrored Proper-wing views and misinformation.

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Fb has launched a beforehand unseen report on its most-viewed content material within the US after criticism for touting its transparency however failing to launch the data.

The report, which lists posts, pages, and hyperlinks most seen by Fb person accounts between January and March 2021, was first obtained and verified Saturday by the New York Instances. It represents a “extra full image of what individuals see on Fb,” the corporate stated within the report. Fb used its personal engagement monitoring service, CrowdTangle, to compile the info. 

Within the report, the most-viewed hyperlink was to a South Florida Solar Sentinel story republished by the Chicago Tribune whose headline initially instructed a hyperlink between the COVID-19 vaccine and a Florida physician’s loss of life. The story was seen by Fb customers over 53 million instances. Amongst Fb’s most-viewed pages is the Epoch Instances, a Proper-wing conspiracy newspaper publication, which drew in over 81 million web page views.

The corporate withheld this early report after a number of executives stated it appeared unhealthy for Fb, the New York Instances reported, citing an inside firm e-mail.

Final week, Fb launched an analogous report displaying information for the second quarter of 2021, in an effort to seem extra clear. Final week’s report touted giant viewer numbers for extra innocuous content material, like cat GIFs and meme pages. 

“On the query of the unreleased report from earlier this 12 months and why we held it. We ended up holding it as a result of there have been key fixes to the system we needed to make,” Andy Stone, Fb’s coverage communications supervisor, stated in a tweet thread on Saturday.

Insider couldn’t attain both Stone or Fb for touch upon what fixes to the system the corporate must make.

Fb has been slammed by politicians, well being consultants, regulators, and lots of customers for not doing sufficient to restrict the unfold of misinformation on subjects starting from election conspiracy theories to false narratives concerning the COVID-19 vaccines. The corporate has been lower than forthcoming about how precisely it plans to observe content material associated to  subjects just like the coronavirus vaccine, as COVID case numbers proceed to rise world wide. Final month, President Biden stated Fb was “killing individuals” by not cracking down on coronavirus misinformation — a press release he later walked again.

The social media large’s determination to launch these quarterly studies comes alongside New York Instances journalist Kevin Roose’s Twitter account “Fb’s High 10,” which additionally used Fb’s CrowdTangle information to point out that the platform amplifies Proper-wing voices — a lot to Fb’s annoyance.

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