Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images
By Aric Jenkins
March 23, 2017

In an effort to counter the spread of fake news, Facebook is rolling out a new feature that alerts users of articles that include “disputed content.”

The fact-checking tool was first spotted by Facebook users attempting to share a story falsely claiming that thousands of Irish people were brought to the United States as slaves, according to the Guardian.

Some users noticed that an attempt to link the story prompted a red alert stating that the article was disputed by fact-checking site Snopes and the Associated Press.

If the alert is clicked, a pop-up emerges, stating: “Sometimes people share fake news without knowing it. When independent fact-checkers dispute this content, you may be able to visit their websites to find out why. Only fact-checkers signed up to Poynter’s non-partisan code of principles are shown.”

Facebook announced its plans to crack down on fake news in December after the social media platform was accused of widely distributing false or misleading articles that led to President Donald Trump’s election.

After initially playing down Facebook’s role in the spread of fake news, founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg pledged to create a tool in conjunction with third-party fact-checkers. “We’re a new kind of platform for public discourse – and that means we have a new kind of responsibility to enable people to have the most meaningful conversations, and to build a space where people can be informed,” Zuckerberg wrote in a statement on his Facebook page.

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