Snapchat has published a new review its ongoing efforts to combat the spread of false information in its application, which also provides valuable insight into the variability between Snap and other platforms and why it requires a unique, dedicated approach.
While Facebook and Twitter tend to contain false information, especially about the side effects of the vaccine in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Snapchat has largely been left out of the discussion, and its alternative approach to social potentially outlines a framework for better managing news distribution.
In essence, Snapchat says it will eventually see success in its approach to misinformation and security because of an application design that focuses on maintaining close connections as opposed to sending to the public.
As explained Snap:
“Snapchat was originally built to help people talk to their close friends instead of providing the ability to send messages throughout the app. And we have always felt a deep responsibility to ensure that the news and information we see in our community on Snapchat are credible from trusted and clear sources. “
In fact, the more closed nature of the app gives it some advantages in this regard, but as noted, it also provides an interesting point as to why Snapchat marketing is different.
“In our application, we do not allow anhydrous content to” spread the virus. ” Snapchat does not provide an unmoderated open news feed where untrusted individuals or publishers may post false information. “
Indeed, the public news feed approach, which seeks to increase the most engaging content, encourages a “hot sample” approach in the press where balance and reason are unlikely to arouse interest other than sensation and biased reporting.
This has been underlined many times – a A study conducted by MIT in 2018 found it false news is 70% more likely to retweet than actual reports, while Twitter retweet threads from false reports “reach ten to about 20 times faster cascade depth than the facts.” According to another study published last year, Facebook traffic is substantial unreliable news sources.
And that makes sense. Hollywood gossip magazines have shaped the entire industry around long reports, even blatantly false stories, because it’s much more interesting to share something controversial, something that goes against grain, which is more exciting than people’s everyday lives. Some of us naturally want to be the one who knows, the one who is told the great secrets above all else, the behind-the-scenes knowledge and conversation. Undoubtedly, and it can be exciting to share the latest rumors with your followers and get all the likes and comments.
That makes sense, but when you extend the same framework to political news and health information, as we have seen recently, it can have significant and dangerous consequences.
Today, however, everyone has their own media that share and share the latest things “they don’t want us to know”. People can now curate their own gossip magazines on any topic they like, and in many ways it is human nature to look for these examples in an effort to break the world’s unknown codes and feel part of something bigger. It is, in a broader sense, an important issue in the social media environment and gives every person a platform to reinforce this because people want the speed of announcements, the excitement that comes with these red alerts in apps.
Snapchat avoids this because it has not knowingly provided a public news feed, which reduces incentives to be controversial and fish for likes and comments on these hot shots.
This is indeed the main reason why Snapchat has been able to avoid much of the controversy surrounding it, although it also points out that it takes further definitions. prohibit the dissemination of identified misleading information, review all political and legal advertisements (based on peer review), and impose restrictions on the size of group discussions to further reduce potential proliferation.
Facebook’s approach even has a special dig:
“Our approach to controlling content that contains false information is simple – We will not mark it, we will delete it completely. ”
Snap can somehow be seen as a model of moderation in these respects, but as Snap himself points out, it is not the same as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram because public comments and discussion are not readily available and have fewer opportunities to gain attraction.
So while Snap applauds itself here, it also clearly shows that it’s not the same as other social apps, so there’s no direct comparison.
Could other apps have approached things less publicly? I mean, Facebook tends to make sure that your most important news feed where people spend most of their time is the people you’re connected to. But since everyone is on Facebook, it still gives it an expanded opportunity to expand – if Snapchat had the same number of users as Facebook, it would probably be in a similar situation.
But perhaps deleting public message as an option could be a way to reduce the spread of such in all applications? Perhaps it could reduce the incentive to send an engagement bait as a way to “spread the virus” and get those likes.
It’s hard to say, but it could be something worth considering – but still, Facebook or Twitter are unlikely to do so, given the engagement benefits they see in public publishing in their applications.
So it’s not the same, it’s not a real comparison here. But it is interesting to consider Snapchat as a case study in this way.