Apple CEO Tim Cook wants the tech industry to take action against the “fake news” stories polluting the web.
“It had to be a big campaign. We had to think about each demographic,” Cook said in a rare interview.
Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, Cook also said that “all of us tech companies need to create some sort of tool that helps reduce the volume of fake news.”
Other top tech company CEOs, like Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg, have spoken out on the matter in recent months. But Cook’s comments are much more outspoken.
According to the Telegraph, he said made-up stories and hoaxes were “killing people’s minds.”
And he called the “fake news” epidemic a big problem in many parts of the world. ”
The term “fake news” was originally coined to describe online stories designed to mislead readers. Usually, these stories are shared on Facebook and other social networking sites to generate profits for the creators. Other times, the stories are essentially propaganda created for political purposes.
Stories like these received widespread attention before and after the US election. Fictional stories with titles like “Pope Francis shocks the world, endorses Donald Trump as president” have won millions of clicks.
It can be very difficult for web surfers to distinguish between legitimate news sources and fake news.
That’s where companies like Apple come in.
In an interview with the Telegraph – part of a multi-day European trip – Cook said “too many of us are currently complaining and haven’t figured out what to do.”
He urges both technological and intellectual solutions.
“We needed a modern version of the public service announcement campaign. It could be done quickly if there was a will,” Cook told the paper.
What he describes as music reaching the ears of literacy advocates in the media.
“It seems like a new course is imperative for modern kids, for digital kids,” says Cook.
There are scattered efforts in some schools to teach media literacy, with a focus on digital skills, but it is by no means universal.
When asked if Apple would commit to sponsoring a PSA campaign, an Apple spokesperson said the company had no further comment on Cook’s interview.
The Apple CEO also suggested that tech companies could help weed out fake stories, though he added, “We have to try to stifle this without compromising freedom of speech.” commentary and journalism.”
Apple’s own Apple News app has been noted as a relatively reliable place to find information.
The company “reviews publishers participating in Apple News,” BuzzFeed noted last December.
And the app has “a concern reporting function where users can flag fake news or hate speech.”
Facebook recently started working with fact-checkers to check the “warning labels” that show up when users share fabricated stories.
Cook, in the newspaper interview, expressed optimism that the “fake news” epidemic is a “short-term thing – I don’t believe people want that at the end of the day.”
CNNMoney (New York) First published February 11, 2017: 8:00 p.m. ET
https://money.cnn.com/2017/02/11/media/fake-news-apple-ceo-tim-cook/index.html?section=money_news_international Apple CEO Tim Cook calls for “massive campaign” against fake news