Facebook and YouTube on Tuesday announced that they are going to clamp down on serious medical misinformation, such as “bogus cancer treatment claims”.
A report in the Washington Post stated that many cancer patients and their families seek alternative treatment on Facebook groups.
“Misleading health content is particularly bad for our community,” Travis Yeh, a Facebook product manager, wrote in a blog post. “So, last month we made two ranking updates to reduce (1) posts with exaggerated or sensational health claims and (2) posts attempting to sell products or services based on health-related claims.”
YouTube, too, said they are aware of misinformation on medical topics circulating on their platform. “We have taken a number of steps to address this including surfacing more authoritative content across our site for people searching for cancer treatment-related topics, beginning to reduce recommendations of certain medical misinformation videos and showing information panels with more sources where they can fact check information for themselves,” a YouTube spokesperson said.