AP Goes To War With Facebook and ‘Fake News’

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By Heat Street Staff | 10:41 pm, December 6, 2016

In a political season marred by the proliferation of fake and misleading news spread by shady and biased outlets, the Associated Press has taken the unusual step of reporting on a story specifically because it isn’t true.

According to the AP news story, headlined “Trending story that Clinton won just 57 counties is untrue”:

A trending story that claims Hillary Clinton won a total of 57 counties in the presidential election is untrue.

The Associated Press finds that Clinton won 487 counties nationwide, compared with 2,626 for President-elect Donald Trump.

The story appeared on several viral content sites that cater to some of Trump’s supporters.

Debunking Internet conspiracy theories is usually the domain of activist groups and Snopes.com.

A review of Facebook revealed few instances of the fake story — allegedly burning up social media. One example can be seen here:

apfacebook

It is unclear if fact-checking Facebook will become a full-time vocation for the AP. If so, we at Heat Street worry that the venerable wire service might have trouble reporting all the other real news in the world after their arms fall off.

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