Fighting the “information virus” Tech giants work to bridge the “content divide”

One of the reasons the Internet is so rich in false information is that there is a gap in access to content. This phenomenon is known as the “infodemic”. The presence of Facebook founder CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the Munich Security Summit on February 15th attracted attention. Zuckerberg was one of the few Silicon Valley star tech executives to attend the high-level meeting.

“Online content must be regulated and can be enforced through existing regulations that apply to the telecommunications and media industries,” Zuckerberg told global leaders and security executives at the summit. “

Web giants contribute to advertising space

Just last week, Facebook participated in a who-coordinated discussion at WHO on how to combat coronavirus rumors at Facebook’s Menlo Park campus in Silicon Valley. Also in attendance were executives from technology giants such as Amazon and Google. They also plan to have a meeting every few months.

At the meeting, WHO shared information with tech giants on its response to coronaviruses, and participants elaborated on their thoughts on how to respond to the outbreak. Each company has a few minutes to make a statement. They all agreed not to share the content in public.

Andy Pattison, who flew to Silicon Valley for the event, said “the tone is changing” as big tech companies are now cracking down on fake news about the coronavirus. He also said WHO would help technology companies provide the right information, rather than relying entirely on third-party agencies.

Other companies that attended the meeting included representatives from Twilio, Dropbox, Verizon, Salesforce, Twitter and Airbnb. Apple, Lyft and Uber are understood to have been invited but not attended.

Several companies, including Facebook and Amazon, have proposed contributing ad space on their sites to help stop the spread of false information, including setting up an online space and a joint mail ingress group, according to Pattison.

The meeting also discussed preparedness for disasters and ways to disseminate accurate information to consumers. At the end of the meeting, the participating companies agreed to develop collaboration tools, provide better content, and establish a call center where people can ask questions or get advice.

“Information Epidemic” R0 Index Similar to Virus

Patison points out that one of the reasons the Internet is so rich in fake news is that there is a gap in access to content. He was referring to information asymmetry. “Twitter, YouTube and other social media sites are still buzzing with rumors,” says Pattison, who calls the issue “infomic.”

As people continue to search for information about coronaviruses, some outlaws take advantage of their curiosity and see opportunities to make money. For example, Amazon has seen a flood of books on Amazon that have sparked fears about the virus, and fake news stories continue to spread on Facebook and other social media platforms. Vitamin C will also appear in the search results of major retailers, including Amazon, after false reports suggestited it could cure the coronavirus.

Every outbreak comes with a big explosion of information, especially when we enter such a developed information society. We all know that the spread of the virus has a basic number of infections called R0, R0 is higher than 1, which means that the virus is still spreading. The study found that the spread of information on the network can also refer to this R0 index, the information spread on the Internet R0 value is about 2, and the current new coronavirus R0 value is similar.

So it is especially important to avoid the release of misinformation during an outbreak, because once the wrong information is spread online, it spreads as quickly as the virus, misleading the population, and even if the source of the misinformation is cut off, it is still difficult to prevent its spread.

In recent weeks, nearly 70,000 people worldwide have been infected with the new coronavirus as the outbreak continues to grow. Since the pathogen is not well understood, there are still many unanswered questions about when the virus will peak.

The outbreak has affected the largest technology companies. Facebook warned on Friday that production of its Oculus virtual reality helmet would be affected by the coronavirus, while Apple acknowledged that most of its retail stores in China were temporarily closed because of the virus outbreak.

Some of the priorities raised by technology companies in recent weeks include working with third-party fact-checking agencies and global public health organizations. Facebook has been stepping up its internal efforts, recently hiring Praveen Raja as head of the Health Innovation Partnership, which served as chief operating officer of PATH, a global health nonprofit.

Pattison says some companies have gone further than others in providing information about coronaviruses. Some companies admit that no action has been taken other than to communicate with their employees to ensure safety, but many company-related projects are well underway.

“The purpose of this is to sow the seeds of thought, and it works well. Pattison said, “I encourage cooperation and innovation. This is a good time in times of crisis. “