Facebook wants to turn Black Mirror episode titled Nosedive into reality on its platform. The third season of Black Mirror started with an episode which imagines every person being rated by another person, complete with five-star rating system. Now, the social media giant has begun to assign its user a reputation score that predicts their trustworthiness.
According to The Washington Post, Facebook is assigning a score on a scale that goes from zero to 1. The social media giant has reportedly developed this rating system over the past year and it seems like a response to actors who have gamed the system to spread false information. In a response to Russian intrusion and recently disclosed Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook is measuring the credibility of users to help identify malicious actors.
“Facebook developed its reputation assessments as part of its effort against fake news,” Tessa Lyons, Facebook product manager told The Post. Facebook says since most of content moderation happens based on what users report, some users have begun falsely reporting items as untrue. “A user’s trustworthiness score isn’t meant to be an absolute indicator of a person’s credibility,” Lyons added.
Despite adding a trustworthiness score, Facebook says there is no single unified reputation score that can be assigned to its users. The company says the new trustworthiness score is one measurement among thousands of new behavioral clues that Facebook takes into account as it tries to understand risk.
It is not clear what criteria Facebook takes into account before assigning a score to its users. It is also not immediately clear whether all users have a score and how Facebook plans to use these scores in its internal algorithms.
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Facebook is not immediately offering details on how this new credibility system works on the platform. It is a departure from using algorithms alone to make all kinds of predictions about people. The social media giant now offers users an option to report some type of content as false, which are then passed on to third-party fact-checkers.
With this credibility score, Facebook will probably know whom to trust when someone flags a content on its platform. This might also speed up the process of taking down content, which are false and ensure, people with bad motives do not game the system. “People often report things that they just disagree with,” Lyons added.