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VERIFY: No, Facebook 'bots' are not fact checking your posts

Facebook has confirmed that such claims are a hoax.

Viral claims telling Facebook users that they can block fact-checks of their posts have been circulating since early this year.

These posts claim that you can go into Facebook's settings and block "bots" that fact check your posts.

Facebook's fact-check system doesn't quite work that way, however.

Credit: Facebook

THE QUESTION 

Can you change your settings to stop Facebook from fact checking your posts?

THE ANSWER 

No. A Facebook spokesperson told VERIFY in an email, "the ability to turn off our fact checking partners is a debunked hoax."

Facebook doesn't use bots for fact checking posts either.

WHAT WE FOUND

Ryan Peters, a Facebook spokesman, says it’s a hoax. “We don’t have bots that scan posts for falsehoods,” he said in an email.

Instead, Facebook says it uses independent, third-party fact-checkers “certified through the nonpartisan International Fact-Checking Network.” The fact-checkers review Facebook and Instagram posts, videos, images and links in an effort “to address viral misinformation – provably false claims, particularly those that have the potential to mislead or harm,” it says.

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Facebook also has a three-part strategy in handling “problematic content” – it removes posts that plainly violate its policies, reduces the distribution of questionable content in news feeds, and applies warning labels to flagged content so people can judge for themselves what to read and share.

You can manage your blocks within Facebook's settings, but there's no single master list where you'd just type "fact check." There are separate lists for blocking users, messages, apps and pages. None of those allows you to block the independent, third-party fact-checkers themselves.

Credit: Facebook

While it's possible to block the pages for fact-checkers, that will just stop you from seeing their page's posts and the page itself from seeing your post. This doesn't block individuals operating the page or block links from the pages' website from appearing under your posts.

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