No, AI won't solve the fake news problem

At least not for decades to come. Sorry, Mark Zuckerberg.

New: Gift this subscriber-only story to your friends and family

In his testimony before the US Congress this year, Mr Mark Zuckerberg, the chief executive of Facebook, addressed concerns about the strategically disseminated misinformation known as fake news that may have affected the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. Have no fear, he assured Congress, a solution was on its way - if not next year, then at least "over a five-to 10-year period".

The solution? Artificial intelligence (AI). Mr Zuckerberg's vision, which the committee members seemed to accept, was that soon enough, Facebook's AI programs would be able to detect fake news, distinguishing it from more reliable information on the platform.

Already a subscriber? 

Read the full story and more at $9.90/month

Get exclusive reports and insights with more than 500 subscriber-only articles every month

Unlock these benefits

  • All subscriber-only content on ST app and

  • Easy access any time via ST app on 1 mobile device

  • E-paper with 2-week archive so you won't miss out on content that matters to you

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 22, 2018, with the headline No, AI won't solve the fake news problem. Subscribe