Meta Launches New Media Literacy & Fact Checking Programs Ahead Of Voice Referendum

Meta Launches New Media Literacy & Fact Checking Programs Ahead Of Voice Referendum

In an attempt to combat misinformation on its platform in the run-up to the Voice to Parliament Referendum, Meta will expand its fact-checking partnership and its media literacy campaign with the Australian Associated Press.

Mia Garlick, director of public policy for Meta Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands, Japan and Korea, wrote that “Meta has been preparing for this year’s Voice to Parliament Referendum for a long time, leaning into expertise from previous elections.”

The first prong for countering misinformation on the platform is new one-off funding for Meta’s Australian fact checkers to increase their capacity.

The company will also work with RMIT CrossCheck, a team of online fact-checking experts from the university, to increase monitoring for misinformation trends in the lead-up to the referendum, and share “best-practice guidance on combating false information” with journalists and other stakeholders.

“We are grateful for this support which recognises our pre-emptive approach to information integrity. In the Voice to Parliament Referendum some narratives may not fit into a clear ‘fact check’ yet are still important in terms of educating the public safely and calmly. This multimedia project will allow us to highlight themes including via social media and support democratic discussion,” said RMIT FactLab CrossCheck APAC director Anne Kruger.

Meta has also said that it will expand its “Check The Facts” media literacy campaign with Australian Associated Press. It had previously run the campaign ahead of the 2022 Federal Election campaign in October 2021 and early 2022.

“AAP has always been committed to supporting Australians with fact-based journalism, and our media literacy collaboration with Meta allows us to also help people build the skills they need to make properly informed decisions,” said AAP CEO Lisa Davies.

“Drawing heavily on AAP’s fact-checking expertise, the next phase of our successful media literacy campaign will share practical ways for people to recognise and avoid misinformation.”

As far as political advertising goes, a topic which has already seen Nine fall into hot water thanks to a particularly poor and tasteless ad in the AFR, Meta said that its current measures should suffice.

Its existing requirement for advertisers to go through an authorisation process using government-issued photo ID, and place a “Paid for by” disclaimers on their ads still stands. This policy also covers social issue ads that seek to influence public opinion through discussion, debate or advocacy for or against important topics.

Any ads that do not meet these standards will be removed and archived in a public Ad Library for seven years.

However, Meta also said that it would be providing ad credits to UNICEF Australia to raise awareness of Voice-related media literacy and its work to raise the voices of a range of young people in support of the Voice to Parliament, including Aboriginal youth.

“Accurate information is critical during the lead up to the referendum and for voters to make their decision. Meta’s lead in helping trusted sources like UNICEF Australia share information for voters, and the perspectives of our younger generations on this issue is a meaningful use of social media and valuable contribution during the debate,” said UNICEF Australia’s head of child rights policy, advocacy and child/youth voice Katie Maskiell.




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    1. If that’s not overreach (again) I’m santa claus!!. Who are the Fact checkers?
      Are they the same fact checkers used to protect us from misinformation about covid 19 ”vaccines”, (and now we find out that the ‘facts’ about the safety and effectiveness of these were wrong !)
      The agenda is to get the YES vote by whatever means available and if that means stifling any real meaningful information from the NO campaign by the phantom know-it-all fact checkers then that’s what will be done. (AAP journos…pffft.)
      If the voice to Parliament Referendum narratives do not fit into the box the govt wants to push then they will be discredited.
      Wait and see how much YES material is ‘fact’ and how much NO material is not fact !!.( how about a report on that from you guys before we go like sheep to another ‘slaughter’ ?)

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