Facebook has vowed to establish an information hub to stand as a bulwark against a rising tide of climate denialism. The fact-based initiative will seek to counter falsehoods and misinformation by furnishing users with reams of facts, figures and data.
Why does Facebook need to bust myths about climate change?
The social network has seen its reputation tarnished by a slew of misinformation engulfing its services in the wake of unprecedented wildfires raging across the US west coast.
With rumors spreading just as fast online, Facebook is attempting to get on the front foot by providing an authoritative and trustworthy voice on the matter.
Facebook has found itself in the headlines for all the wrong reasons yet again after an article falsely accusing leftwing extremists of starting the fires was shared 63,000 times.
What will the hub do?
The Climate Science Hub will sit as a distinct entity within Facebook that will connect members to authoritative sources.
Users will also be informed of the individual steps they can take to tackle climate change in their everyday lives.
Practicing what it preaches, Facebook has committed itself to achieve net-zero carbon emissions and becoming 100% supported by renewable energy this year.
Over the next decade, Facebook will go further, with the goal of achieving net-zero emissions from all suppliers, design and technology partners.
Why is it a big deal for advertisers?
2020 has witnessed the emergence of climate change denial as a brand safety issue amid ambiguity over who should be held accountable for defining and policing malicious misinformation.
Some of the world’s biggest brands, such as L’Oreal, Uber and Samsung, have been caught up in scandal after their adverts were placed alongside climate change denial videos, enhancing their authenticity.
Brands have responded by working with content providers to mitigate the risk, but as yet a universal solution remains elusive.
Highlighting the growing scale of the issue, a recent study by Edelman found that 69% of people believe that advertisers should sever relationships with platforms that propagate ’misleading information’.