Ten days after the U.S. presidential election, Mark Zuckerberg admitted that his company has a problem with proliferating fake stories across the internet.
In a Facebook post late on Friday night, the Facebook CEO admitted that fighting fake news on the platform is a problem that's complex "both technically and philosophically"—a stark change in tone after spending the past week defending the platform against accusations that faux reports helped the Republican president-elect Donald Trump win the White House.
Although he previously had said the accusations that Facebook was full of fake news were "crazy," Zuckerberg wrote that the company is now working on several projects to cut down on misinformation. Those projects include improving ways to better detect and classify misinformation, making it easier for users to report fake stories, adding third-party verification and exploring ways to label stories that have been "flagged as false."
"The bottom line is: we take misinformation seriously," Zuckerberg wrote. "Our goal is to connect people with the stories they find most meaningful, and we know people want accurate information. We've been working on this problem for a long time, and we take this responsibility seriously. We've made significant progress, but there is more work to be done."
Earlier this week, Facebook and Google—which have both faced criticism about fake news since the election—announced plans to cut off advertising revenue to fake news sites on their platforms.
On Thursday, U.S. President Barack Obama criticized the role of fake news during the 2016 campaign. During a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Obama mentioned the problem Facebook seems to have, explaining that "if everything seems to be the same and no distinctions are made, then we won't know what to protect."
While Zuckerberg still said the percentage of fake stories is "relatively small," he said Facebook aims to be "arbiters of truth" while still providing people with a way to express their opinions and consume content. (In a previous post on Facebook, he said 99 percent of the news on the platform he created is true.)
"Some of these ideas will work well, and some will not," Zuckerberg wrote in his post on Friday. "But I want you to know that we have always taken this seriously, we understand how important the issue is for our community and we are committed to getting this right."