Hugely successful Facebook fake news author considers himself a "satirist"

Is Facebook Closer to Making Money from WhatsApp

The mushrooming of fake news sites carrying unreliable or false "information" is why Facebook is now in hot water: in the last three months running up to the US presidential election, the top-performing fake election news stories on Facebook generated more engagement than the top stories from major news outlets, reported Buzzfeed News.

The tech news outlet found that the 20 top-performing bogus stories from hoax websites and extremely partisan blogs generated slightly more than 8.7 million shares, reactions and comments at the leading social network in the three months before the November 8 election.

But some were launched stateside, and one such purveyor is speaking out following the election.

Silverman then compared the Facebook engagement - the number of shares, reactions, and comments - for the top 20 legitimate news stories against the top 20 fake news stories for three three-month periods.

"I think Trump is in the White House because of me", said Horner, adding that his sites were constantly picked up by Trump supporters. "It's real scary. I've never seen anything like it".

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Google plans to remove certain sites from its search listing "that misrepresent, misstate or hide information about the publisher, the publisher's content or the primary purpose" from their ad ecosystem.

In the end, Google and Facebook fake news issues come down to customer experience. Their software algorithms instantly disburse and promote news, with the most popular stories going viral to the world.

In a new profile of Obama in The New Yorker, David Remnick describes a scene where the president "talked nearly obsessively" about a BuzzFeed article that explained how a small Macedonian town was pumping out fake news on Facebook for profit.

Politifact rated 70 percent of Trump statements they fact-checked as mostly false, false, or "Pants on Fire".

A Facebook spokesman told BuzzFeed News that the top stories don't reflect overall engagement on the platform.

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Horner also said that he published his hoaxes to make Trump supporters look stupid.

Obama said that we live in an age with "so much active misinformation" that is "packaged very well" and looks the same whether it's on Facebook or on TV. In an effort to categorized sites that create slanted, satirical and fake news, Melissa Zimdars started an online, public list of them.

Recently, Zuckerberg said Facebook will take more action to tackle fake news, yet still denies it had any affect on Donald Trumps election victory.

"If everything seems to be the same and no distinctions are made, then we won't know what to protect", he further said. The incentive behind these stories isn't just political: According to one writer, fake stories can generate big cash for the authors behind them.

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