Facebook takes next steps to addressing link preview modification and combat fake news

Jul 18, 2017:

As part of Facebook’s continuing efforts to stop the spread of misinformation and false news on its platform, starting today non-publisher Pages will no longer be able to overwrite link metadata (i.e. headline, description, image) in the Graph API or in Page composer.

This will help eliminate a channel that has been abused to post false news, following the announcement of the removal of the ability to customize link metadata during an update last month. Impacted Pages can still program and preview how their link attachments will appear on Facebook using Open Graph tags and the Sharing Debugger.

Facebook also released a solution to support publishers who rely on overwriting link preview metadata to customize how their content appears to audiences on Facebook. A tab was introduced in Page Publishing Tools for publishers to indicate link ownership and continue editing how their own links appear on Facebook.

The feature will be rolled out first to publishers, including news, sports and entertainment Pages, because many of these Page types modify links to their own articles at scale. Pages that abuse the ability to modify their own links in any way (for example, misrepresenting link content, spamming people with posts that do not meet our Community Standards) will lose access to this tool to overwrite metadata for link previews.

“This tool is another step we’re taking to limit the spread of false news on Facebook,” said Alex Hardiman, Product Manager of News at Facebook. “We’re committed to supporting publisher workflows, while limiting malicious misrepresentations of underlying link content. As always, we recommend publishers follow our publisher principles as basic guideposts to reach their audience on Facebook.”

“Over the next few months we will learn how this content customization tool works for publishers and improves the quality of information on Facebook, and we’ll iterate based on feedback,” he added.

For more information, please visit the Facebook Help Center.