Facebook launches tough new measures to tackle online abuse of journalists

Social media giant Facebook has launced new measures to protect journalists in the UK from online abuse.

By Darren Burke
Saturday, 13th February 2021, 11:33 am

Th new scheme allows journalists working for a news organisation that is a verified news page on Facebook to register using their personal accounts.

By registering, Facebook says journalists will get stronger security features that further protect their information and online presence on Facebook against harassment and potential hacking threats.

Those who register will also receive access to benefits, tools and features built “with journalists’ needs in mind”.

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Facebook has launched new measures to protect journalists.

These include safety protections for journalists’ Instagram accounts and access to CrowdTangle Search, which is a social media monitoring platform to help publishers find stories.

Registered journalists will also have the option to apply for ‘Blue Badge’ verification, which lets other Facebook users know that a page or profile of public interest is authentic.

In a statement, Facebook said: “Journalists serve an essential role by keeping us informed and connected with the communities we care about. In the course of doing their jobs, members of the press can face threats both in the physical world and online.

“We know that journalists and news media professionals are at a higher risk of online harm because of their occupation, and we want to provide better account protections for them.

It added: “Journalist registration is the beginning of Facebook’s efforts to better identity and support journalists on our platform.

“While we’re starting with account protections, in the future registered journalists may also be eligible for other news-specific benefits, tools, and features.

“We’ll continue working with news organizations, academics, and industry groups to explore other ways to support registered journalists.”