Facebook is the largest social media service on the planet, with over 2 billion users — over a quarter of the world’s population.
As such, policing Facebook is a tremendous challenge. One of the service’s biggest policing issues is with fake news stories, which was a particularly big problem in the US during the 2016 presidential election cycle.
Despite Facebook’s efforts to stop the spread of fake news, the massive social media service is still rife with it: In 2019, the top 100 fake news stories on Facebook were viewed over 150 million times — “enough to reach every registered voter at least once,” according to Avaaz, the non-profit that did the study.
In 2019, many Facebook users saw news posts that claimed President Donald Trump’s grandfather was, “a pimp and tax evader,” and that his father was a member of the KKK — none of which is true.
Facebook’s 2 billion-plus users also had access to a post claiming that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez proposed a ban on motorcycles (she didn’t), and that House speaker Nancy Pelosi was diverting Social Security funding for the Trump impeachment inquiry (she wasn’t).
These are just a few of the most-shared political fake news stories of 2019, according to a new study from the non-profit Avaaz. The top 100 fake news stories on Facebook in 2019 were viewed over 150 million times — “enough to reach every registered voter at least once,” according to the report.
Here are the top 10 fake-news stories of 2019:
10. “Joe Biden Calls Trump Supporters ‘Dregs of Society'”
9. “NYC coroner who declared the death of Jeffrey Epstein a suicide made half a million dollars a year working for the Clinton Foundation until 2015”
8. “Tim Allen quote Trump’s wall costs less than the Obamacare website”
7. “Democrats Vote To Enhance Med Care for Illegals Now, Vote Down Vets Waiting 10 Years for Same Service”
6. “‘BREAKING: Nancy Pelosi’s Son Was Exec At Gas Company That Did Business In Ukraine”
5. “Ilhan Omar Holding Secret Fundraisers With Islamic Groups Tied to Terror”
4. “Trump Is Now Trying To Get Mike Pence Impeached”
3. “AOC proposed a motorcycle ban”
2. “Nancy Pelosi diverting Social Security money for the impeachment inquiry”
1. “Trump’s grandfather was a pimp and tax evader; his father a member of the KKK”