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Facebook Likely to Acquire Bloomsbury AI to Fight Fake News

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Facebook’s (FB - Free Report) resolve to fight the fake news menace is evident from the upcoming acquisition of artificial intelligence (AI) startup, Bloomsbury AI, reports TechCrunch. The social media giant is reportedly paying between $23 million and $30 million in stock and cash to acquire the company.

The London-based company specializes in natural language processing (NLP) and its AI technology Cape reads texts and answers questions related to the content.

We note that fake news dissemination on Facebook has been widely regarded as the primary reason for the surprise victory of Donald Trump against Hillary Clinton in the U.S. Presidential elections. Since then, the company has been continuously criticized for the spread of fake news on its platform.

However, Facebook has become quite aggressive in building a stronger community. In June, a report surfaced that Facebook will be paying and sharing advertising revenues for content produced by news organizations like Time Warner’s CNN, Fox News and Univision. Original content from these news providers is expected to solve the fake news problem.

The launch of U.S. news programs for its video service, Watch, in 2018, is also in the pipeline, per Reuters.

The company also announced that it is removing the Trending news section (launched in 2014) of the social network, which users have found less useful over time.

Per Forbes, Facebook is testing Breaking News Label with 80 publishers across North America, South America, Europe, India and Australia. A Today In section that connects people with important news from local publishers is also in the offing. The News Video in Watch section will stream live coverage, daily news briefings and weekly deep dives.

Not just Facebook, Twitter (TWTR - Free Report) and Alphabet (GOOGL - Free Report) have also been accused of spreading fake stories on the platform.

Facebook’s initiative to combat the issue with this acquisition is expected to boost trustworthiness. Moreover, the improvement of technical systems to develop more efficient detection of false stories will help restore user as well as investor confidence, in our view.

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