Facebook’s News Tab curators told not to censor news about the company

The team will prioritize the media outlets that report a particular news story first, and it’ll also give the highest priority to local outlets for local news. However, members can’t highlight anything until two publications have published pieces on the same story if it’s based on an “unsubstantiated report.” They’re also instructed not to feature stories meant to “provoke, divide and polarize” unless they’re “fact-based stories that rely upon journalistic standards.”

While no piece that uses a headline with profanities and obscenities will be featured, Facebook aims to show a “diversity of voices” by featuring a range of topics and publishers. The social network reportedly also clarified in the memo that it will instruct the curators not to censor bad news about the company itself and to “impartially share stories about Facebook, Facebook executives and tech at large.”

Whether using journalists is better than using algorithms to keep the News Tab’s top stories updated remains to be seen. Facebook had been accused of showingpolitical bias— which makes the use of human curators a cause for concern for some —andhaving afaulty algorithmin the past. You might be able to decide for yourself soon enough: the company is reportedly scheduled to roll the feature out in October.

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