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Facebook, Google to tackle fake news

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Facebook, Google and other tech firms have agreed a code of conduct to do more to tackle the spread of fake news, due to concerns it can influence elections, the European Commission said on Wednesday.



“Intended to stave off more heavy-handed legislation, the voluntary code covers closer scrutiny of advertising on accounts and websites where fake news appears.

“Thereby working with fact checkers to filter it out,’’ the commission said.

However, a group of media advisors criticised the companies, also including Twitter and lobby groups for the advertising industry for failing to present more concrete measures.

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Brussels, with EU parliamentary elections scheduled for May, is anxious to address the threat of foreign interference during campaigning.

Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Poland, Portugal and Ukraine are also all due to hold national elections in 2019.

Russia has faced allegations, which it denies, of disseminating false information to influence the U.S. presidential election and Britain’s referendum on EU membership in 2016 as well as Germany’s national election in 2017.

The commission told the firms in April to draft a code of practice, or face regulatory action over what it said was their failure to do enough to remove misleading or illegal content.

European Digital Commissioner Mariya Gabriel said that Facebook, Google, Twitter, Mozilla and advertising groups had responded with several measures.

“The industry is committing to a wide range of actions, from transparency in political advertising to the closure of fake accounts and we welcome this,” she said in a statement.

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The steps also include rejecting payment from sites that spread fake news, helping users understand why they have been targeted by specific ads, and distinguishing ads from editorial content.

However, the advisory group criticised the code, saying the companies had not offered measurable objectives to monitor its implementation.

“The platforms, despite their best efforts, have not been able to deliver a code of practice within the accepted meaning of effective and accountable self-regulation,” the group said, giving no further details.

Its members include the Association of Commercial Television in Europe, the European Broadcasting Union, the European Federation of Journalists and International Fact-Checking Network, and several academics.

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Motherland News

UN reports about 900 fatalities in DR Congo’s ethnic violence.

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The united nations report that at least 890 people were killed in over just 3 days in ethnic violence in western DRC in mid-december.

The UN Human Rights Office reports the violence took place in four villages between Banunu and Batende communities.



The UN however warns the death toll could be higher. But there seems to be conflicting death tolls for the violence.

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A local priest and a civil society activist earlier in the week said at least 400 people had died in bloodshed that even led to the government canceling voting in last month’s presidential polls.

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The UN insists that 890 is the number of people known to have been buried.

The recent attack from the ethnic clashes in Yumbi, Mai-Ndombe Province allegedly started when members of the Banunu tribe wanted to bury one of their traditional chiefs on Batende land.

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Michael Jackson’s daughter, Paris Seeks Rehabilitation.

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Daughter of the late pop singer, Micheal Jackson and 20-year-old superstar, Paris, is reportedly seeking support at a treatment facility to improve her well being.



PEOPLE’s magazine reports that she decided that she needed to take some time off to reboot, realign and prioritize her physical and emotional health. She checked herself into a treatment facility to aid in her wellness plan.

Paris had previously opened up about her battle with depression and says it stemmed from hanging out with a lot of older people doing a lot of crazy things.

She explained: “I was doing a lot of things that 13-, 14-, 15-year-olds shouldn’t do. I tried to grow up too fast, and I wasn’t really that nice of a person.

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”I was crazy. I was actually crazy. I was going through a lot of, like teen, angst. And I was also dealing with my depression and my anxiety without any help.”

Meanwhile, Paris previously took to Instagram to plead with her critics to give her a break. 

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“I guess this is for the people that don’t agree with who I am and don’t agree with my morals and spend their time trying to hurt me. I like to think that I’m on a pretty good track, as someone that is literally still a teenager … I get it, Y’all don’t like the tattoos, Y’all don’t like profanity.

”Y’all don’t like my free spirit, my outspokenness. I’m a young chick and I should be quiet, I get it. I am a teenager. I am doing the best I can, I’m working as hard as I possibly can to make a living for myself and create my own life. I’m fighting for human rights, I’m fighting for animal rights, I’m fighting for the environment. Basically, any liberalist movement that will create positive impact on this planet, I’m trying to get involved in.” Paris Said.

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