After the presidential election, Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook have taken a lot of heat for allowing fake or misleading stories to circulate and be indistinguishable from real news sources. It only took 36 hours for four college students at a Princeton hackathon to solve the problem.
The students built an algorithm for Facebook that would authenticate or verify whether or not a link is real or fake. The group created a Chrome browser extension that adds tags on links to specify if the source is verified or not verified. The algorithm factors in the source’s credibility and cross-checks the content with other news stories to verify whether it is real or not. If a source is not verified, the extension will instead provide a list of more credible information on the topic elsewhere online.
The extension, called FiB, is now an “open-source project” so anyone with development experience can join in and help to improve it. The demand for the plugin is so high that their limited operation couldn’t handle it, so it isn’t up and running now but will be soon.
Read the full story here (via Washington Post)
Here’s what else we’re reading:
The police practice of overpricing tickets and fining the poor and people of color is at high rates all across the country. Policing for profit is the result of a major structural flaw: These departments rely on the revenue from tickets and fines to fill increasingly large budget shortfalls. The more police stops there are, the more will end in violence. Ending policing for profit is one of more than two dozen solutions New York Daily News’ Shaun King proposes in a 25-part series on solving police brutality. (via New York Daily News)
Adidas has created a shoe that is both stylish and is working to clean up the sea. The shoes are made of 95 percent ocean plastic recovered from Maldives, a small nation made up of islands in the Indian Ocean. The brand doesn’t plan to stop there: Adidas aims to produce one million pairs of sneakers from more than 11 million plastic bottles next year and has goals to eliminate all plastic from its supply chain entirely. (via Global Citizen)