Facebook pledges to remove posts containing false vaccine claims
The platform is already removing false claims about Covid-19
Facebook announced on Monday that it would remove posts that contain incorrect claims about vaccines, including the conspiracy theory that they cause autism.
The social media platform already has an extensive list of false health claims that is removes from its platform, and false information regarding vaccines is the latest addition to the list.
In October, Facebook prohibited the purchasing of advertising that included false claims about vaccines, before also pledging to remove posts that contained false claims regarding Covid-19, such as that it is a hoax, in December.
And they are now extending that policy to posts about vaccines of all kinds.
Facebook said it consulted with the World Health Organisation and other leading health institutes to determine a list of false or misleading claims around Covid and vaccines in general.
Facebook's old policy on misleading vaccine information was to down-rank posts, pushing them further down the newsfeed, but now they will be removed entirely.
“Building trust and confidence in these vaccines is critical, so we’re launching the largest worldwide campaign to help public health organisations share accurate information about Covid-19 vaccines and encourage people to get vaccinated as vaccines become available to them,” Kang-Xing Jin, head of health at Facebook, said in a company blog post.
The new changes follow a ruling from the Facebook Oversight Board, an independent body that evaluates decisions made by the company.
Facebook's rules were judged to be too vague and the board ruled that they must update their policy on health content.
Health ministries, nongovernmental organisations and United Nations agencies are also set to receive $120m in advertising credits from Facebook in order to help spread accurate information to the public about Covid-19 and vaccines.
As of Monday, more than 12 million Brits have received the first of two doses of a Covid vaccine. New case numbers and daily death numbers are falling as a result.