Google is spending $6.5 million to stop fake news around coronavirus

The logo of Google is seen in Davos, Switzerland Januar 20, 2020. Picture taken January 20, 2020. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann
  • The money will go into funding to fact-checkers and non-profit organisations fighting misinformation.
  • The tech giant said that it will also help fact-checkers identify the right questions to answer.
  • Google will also train journalists in India to spot health misinformation.
Tech giant Google is now spending big money worldwide to stop the spread of fake news and misinformation regarding coronavirus. With the number of cases around the world having crossed 1 million and people under lockdowns worldover, most are turning to the internet to find more information about the deadly virus.

And that has exposed them to tons of fake news and spreading via WhatsApp forwards. So, Google is “providing $6.5 million in funding to fact-checkers and non-profit organisations fighting misinformation around the world, with an immediate focus on coronavirus.”

People also have a lot of questions – is it airborne, can the virus survive high temperatures etc. And Google wants to build a repository of verified answers. “Fact-checkers and health authorities need help to identify topics that people are searching for and where there might be a gap in the availability of good information online. Unanswered user questions—such as “what temperature kills coronavirus?”—can provide useful insights to fact-checkers and health authorities about content they may want to produce,” said the company’s statement.

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Google will also be training journalists in India to spot health misinformation.

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