Facebook's fake news problem in one chart

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Google already prevents its AdSense program from supporting sites with violent intent or sexual behavior, but some might say it took too long for the company to travel down this path.

So who's behind the rash of fake news stories that gained so much attention during this election? By comparison, the top 20 performing stories from 19 major news websites including The New York Times and Washington Post generated almost 7.4 million shares, reactions and comments. But at a tech conference last Thursday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg dismissed the issue.

Facing criticism on how fake news may have influenced the presidential election, Facebook and Google announced efforts to crack down on such sites Monday.

According to claims made by 38-year-old Paul Horner, Donald Trump's own son and his earlier campaign manager had even shared links to his fake news articles on Twitter and his articles have also appeared as news on Google.

Since the election, companies such as Facebook and Google have come under the gun for for aiding and abetting the spread of fake news generated by people like Horner. "Nobody fact-checks anything anymore - I mean, that's how Trump got elected", Horner told the Post. In a previous speech, Obama said that the repetition of these attacks and "outright lies" on Facebook will cause people to actually start believing them. "I've never seen anything like it". "I posted a fake ad on Craigslist". Like, I made that up.

In the Post interview, Horner took credit for the fake news item about the protester being paid $3,500. "South Park" lawsuit a year ago.

Horner's fake news articles - published on sites created to mimic the look and feel of well-known, legitimate news outlets - had enormous impact this election cycle. He was wrong. Again, he is quoted by the Post: "His followers don't fact-check anything - they'll post everything, believe anything".

"But Trump supporters - they just keep running with it".

Why? I mean - why would you even write that? Facebook explicitly said it would ban sites that it has deemed responsible for fake news from using its advertising network to generate revenue. I have at least 10 sites right now.

But if it did really go away, that would suck. A few weeks ago, he wrote on Facebook that right-wing Republicans click on his stories - and ads - "like it's the cure for cancer", much more so than Democrats, liberals and independents.

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