We are now entering 2019 and we still do not know what to do with the fake news. Electronic misinformation is stronger than ever. It is a difficult problem, especially because it sometimes requires a change of reader's beliefs to be solved. In other words, without any technical solution or enormous cultural change, the problem of false news will not be solved by itself. For this reason, the Microsoft Mobile Edge browser makes a small change. On devices Android and iOS, Microsoft Edge is now installed with a built-in False News Detector, called NewsGuard. This is an extension of Microsoft's Defending Democracy program and was first announced earlier this month.
Although NewsGuard is not enabled by default, anyone using Edge can turn it on by simply switching to the settings menu.
Currently, NewsGuard's ratings focus on US websites but also include important sites abroad. Websites like TechCrunch received approval from NewsGuard, indicating that the content it presents to users is true. However, as he pointed out Guardian, the Daily Mail did not go that well.
Analyzes that affect NewsGuard's rankings are impressive, though they present another issue that makes the fight against fake news particularly difficult. Even if news sources are evaluated by a set of factors, there is still some degree of subjective appreciation that is needed to make these decisions.
NewsGuard is co-administered by Gordon Crovitz, a former publisher of The Wall Street Journal and Steven Brill. Like other news experiments, NewsGuard is based on one Group of people and not algorithms. The company calculates former CIA General Director Michael Hayden and Information Founder Jessica Lessin as two of its consultants.
Edge is not a very popular browser, but it is an interesting case study on the battle against low-quality online information. It also portrays the era of fake news: Users who need a fake news detector are the ones who are less likely to use the application. The Microsoft Edge experiment with NewsGuard is not the solution to the problem, but the existence of a tool for verifying news within the browser could be a step in that direction.