On Thursday, Facebook announced that it’s cracking down on anti-vaccine information on its platform. The company said it will no longer allow the information to be promoted through ads or recommendations, and will make the content less prominent through search results.
Not all is lost, however. Facebook will not entirely take down anti-vaccine posts. The company is exploring ways to give users more context about vaccines through “expert organizations.”
This move shouldn’t come as a surprise, to be fair. Facebook, YouTube and Amazon have faced criticism from journalists and lawmakers alike in the recent weeks for allowing misinformation of vaccines to spread throughout the platforms. Facebook recently told media outlets that it was looking into methods on how it can address the anti-vaccine situation on its platforms.
In a blog post by Monika Bickert, Facebook’s vice president of global policy management, said that the company will begin rejecting ads that include misinformation about vaccines. The company will remove ads targeting certain categories such as “vaccine controversies” from its platform advertising tools.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Amazon have become to hotspots for anti-vaccinations talking points to reach a more wider audience. Thursday’s announcement from Facebook is an acknowledgement from the company that it’s doing something about the anti-vaccination content on its ecosystem.