Sharing Outdated COVID-19 Articles Might Put You On Facebook’s Radar


COVID-19 updates, articles, safety tips, and other content have been doing rounds on the internet, especially on social media for a while now. However, some of the data is outdated, especially the stats on the number of infected. This is why Facebook is warning users when they share stories that are more than 90 days old.

Sharing Outdated COVID-19 Articles Might Put You On Facebook’s Radar


The new initiative comes as a step to curb the spread of misinformation on Facebook. The social media platform is also adding notifications about the source of the coronavirus-related posts shared by users. This further helps to add more context to the stories shared.

"Through providing more context, our goal is to make it easier for people to identify content that's timely, reliable, and most valuable to them," said Facebook VP John Hegeman in a blog post. With this, people are directed to 'authoritative' information about the pandemic.

How Does This Work?

For all the posts shared with links mentioning COVID-19, Facebook will be adding a notification screen. Here, information about the source of the link is provided, allowing users to redirect to the COVID-19 Information Center for authoritative health information.

At the same time, Facebook will send a notification warning users trying to share old stories as they might have lost relevance. The blog post notes that the notification allows users to make informed decisions about what they wish to share on Facebook. The notifications screen appears when people click on the share button on articles older than 90 days.

At the same time, Facebook will allow people to continue sharing an article if they feel it's relevant. "The timeliness of an article is an important piece of context that helps people decide what to read, trust and share," the Facebook blog post notes.

Will It Help?

Misinformation is another battle we're fighting during the pandemic. The Facebook notification update is one of the moves by the company undertaken to curb the spread of misinformation. Twitter and other social networks also have similar steps in hand. The warning while sharing outdated articles is especially handy, as it's often publicized as the latest news to influence people.

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