Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg reportedly approved a new internal effort to defend the social network's News Feeds reputation last month, a huge policy change amid criticism of the spread of misinformation by social media. .
The New York Times reported on Tuesday that Zuckerberg signed Project Amplify in August. The new project includes suggestions for highlighting positive stories from Facebook to users' News Feeds, the most popular section of the site, including posts written by Facebook itself. The idea of Project Amplify is said to have shocked some senior executives of the company.
Project Amplify has since been tested in three US cities, the Times reports. Company spokesman Joe Osborne told the newspaper that with the positive posts, there were no dramatic changes in the way posts were ranked in the Facebook News Feed.
But this project is a departure from Facebook's previous efforts with a simple apology for issues related to misinformation and hate speech. Zuckerberg himself was forced to apologize several times for the campaigns of Russian influence that multiplied on the site during the 2016 elections and pledged to increase transparency.
The company has faced a lot of criticism, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, which may have prompted some executives to start Project Amplify.
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The Times published a series of reports in The Wall Street Journal last week based on internal documents claiming that Facebook downplayed the negative effects of Instagram on young girls and did not take harsh action even when it saw the misinformation about the COVID-19 vaccine to be spread on its platform.