back to article Meta to build election operations center in Europe to inspect AI content

Meta is launching an "EU-specific Elections Operations Center" to tackle AI-generated misinformation and political advertising to prepare for upcoming parliament elections. As part of the social media giant's efforts to moderate content, Meta is working with the European Fact-Checking Standards Network – a project backed by an …

  1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Take Care ...... AIMind Minefields Ahead

    Who now dares lose all credibility and say the machines are not winning?

    And you surely know that all makes perfect common sense.

  2. Khaptain Silver badge

    You can't beat it

    I can easily imagine that the very large majority of all comments, articles etc will be written by entire botnets controlling AI chat bots..

    From the governments to the mafia, everyone will be trying to manipulate the poor souls who rely on social media for information.

  3. Mike 137 Silver badge

    "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

    What could possibly go wrong? After all, it may be artificial, but it's intelligent!*

    *possibly, more intelligent that those who fell for this?

    .

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

      What could possibly go wrong?

      Think also on what can go right. Like the prospect of throwing Zuck in jail for spreading misinformation if/when his 'fact checkers' are shown to be wrong. But it seems to be reliant on this lot-

      https://efcsn.com/governance-body/

      with a UK rep from this lot-

      https://fullfact.org/about/funding/

      Ultimately, it is for our audience to judge for themselves whether we succeed

      Except the whole point of most of these neo-fascist censor bots is to make sure audiences don't get to judge for themselves because they're all pushing for auto-take downs of anything they disagree with, along with punishment. The amusing thing about fullfact is they're developing AI 'tools' to automate censorship, so AI vs AI. And thus the AI wars begin!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

        I'm really looking forward to the increase in the chocolate ration!

      2. Khaptain Silver badge

        Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

        "Except the whole point of most of these neo-fascist censor bots"

        Yup, exactly this, whether it be on the right or on the left.. neo-fascism doesn't really have bias, since it has spread it's wings to the both sides of the pendulum.

        Neither side want's to accept that the other has an opinion.

        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

          Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

          Yup, exactly this, whether it be on the right or on the left.. neo-fascism doesn't really have bias, since it has spread it's wings to the both sides of the pendulum.

          It's the usual problem with genies. Ok, maybe we could trust current governments to do the right thing and really check facts or misinformation. But the next? Or the one after? Education is a far better safeguard against misinformation, but politicians seem to prefer a public that won't question anything. Justin Turdeau was on the news a couple of days ago complaining that people just don't trust the MSM any more. I wonder why that could be? Restoring that trust is going to be difficult, especially given MSM's finances.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Disinformation 101

            > people just don't trust the MSM any more [says the guy constantly disparaging "MSM"]

            That's how disinformation works: make people doubt about everything established (common sense, established information outlets, institutions, police, etc). Then only can you pollute people's brain with disinformation from "alternate" sources. The basic strategy is to make people feel threatened or attacked by the established social order so that they raise their suspiciousness levels (till paranoia). When you feel threatened you're inclined to put everything into question - even your most trusted reference points. Without reference points, you're ripe for "alternate" beliefs/cult/sect.

            This is the reason Russian trolls and MAGAs are constantly demoting and criticizing so called "MSM"s. Anybody using "MSM" in their post actually means "I'm a MAGA fuckwit" and I will try to turn you into another MAGA fuckwit".

            When times are tough, when competition is intense, the fraction of left-behind increases. Typical psychological profile: unable to adapt and who needs to blame "the system" for their own failure. Perfect victims for that basic strategy. This is why Trump recruits among the least educated, becomes their Messiah and can get away with anything.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Disinformation 101

              You may want to leave your echo chamber every few weeks. Even some fresh air might clear your head a bit ;)

              It has been empirically shown that the current news media is gaslighting you. In court commentators have even claimed that they are not news but opinion and won.

              But just keep licking the boot if you really want.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Disinformation 101

                > It has been empirically shown that the current news media is gaslighting you.

                Sorry, I was not alluding to Russia Today, Breitbart news or Sputnik news. But good point.

            2. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Disinformation 101

              This is the reason Russian trolls and MAGAs are constantly demoting and criticizing so called "MSM"s. Anybody using "MSM" in their post actually means "I'm a MAGA fuckwit" and I will try to turn you into another MAGA fuckwit".

              You're projecting again. You are a fuckwit because you can't see obvious problems with the MSM. Navalny dies and within 30mins politicians line up to declare it a murder. MSM lines up to repeat that claim and add their own spin. At the time. nobody could have known if he was murdered because there'd been no autopsy or investigation. Media span with 'SAD'. A simple bit of fact checking would have shown an initial cause of death is often used, especially when transferring bodies. Prisons generally don't have sophisticated medical facilities, labs or staff to make more accurate determinations. Then they ran with 'concealing the body' and not complying with Russia's normal 2-day release rule. But again, the cause of death had not been determined, and thus was evidence in a very high profile potential crime.

              And now with the possibility Navalny died from natural causes, the MSM looks rather foolish by jumping the gun and screaming "Murder!".

              It's been the same with other stories, ie the Panicdemic with the MSM and 'fact checkers' deciding the truth waaay before any actual facts could be known. Proper journalists have warned about this with the 'velocity of news' and constant pressure to be first to file or publish. Mistakes have, and will be made.

              And then there's just the politicisation of news. You provide a great example of this. Anyone who disagrees with you must be MAGA or a Putin troll. Especially if those people are also critical of the dirty tricks the Democrats have been using. But they're also responsible for most of the Russophobia. She's still extremely bitter about how Putin and Trump stole the election, despite most of the evidence for this being widely discredited. The Biden laptop reporting was clearly 'fake news', especially the supposed 51 intelligence experts. The Bbc is blissfully unconcerned about the truth because it wants in to the US market, so happily runs stories about how much interest Trump will have to pay on his $500m 'fine'. It's totally unconcerned with whether the fine was reasonable, proportionate or even legal, or the impact on the perception of justice in the US. The Bbc hates Trump, so will run any damaging story, but isn't interfering with US elections at all.

          2. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

            Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

            Governments have no business declaring what is deemed to be true.

            That's what the press is meant to be for, although they aren't doing their job.

            Also MSM is quite a complimentary term given that "mainstream" media is barely mainstream anymore.

          3. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

            Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

            Ok, maybe we could trust current governments to do the right thing and really check facts or misinformation. ....... Jellied Eel

            :-) Ok, I know you just said that, Jellied Eel, but surely there’s no possible way while pussy is still a cat that you actually meant it.? Everyone nowadays knows governments are not to be trusted to do anything right and proper whenever so corrupted to serve the interests of a heavily invested and infested status quo with no novel great plans for a better future for all.

            1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

              :-) Ok, I know you just said that, Jellied Eel, but surely there’s no possible way while pussy is still a cat that you actually meant it.?

              I can but dream. And collect some more thumbs from the gullible. So here's a neat example-

              https://rogerpielkejr.substack.com/p/apples-oranges-and-normalized-hurricane?utm_source=substack&utm_medium=email&utm_content=share

              It's climate science vs climate 'science'. This story should be a simple one. Climate 'science' made some predictions and a lot of copy concerning increased storm frequency and severity. This has been a contentious topic, mainly because there's a lack of evidence. But damage became a proxy for severity, ie economic loss. We like building in the path of hurricanes, so more we build, more stuff gets damaged.

              So in an attempt to quantify and normalise losses, Prof Pielke Jnr came up with a methodology that's widely used. I've seen him present and explain it, it makes sense. But it doesn't fit the narrative, so a paper got published in PNAS, and the IPCC picked it up and ran with it. Then the MSM did as well because we're meant to own nothing, be happy and eat bugs.

              Except the paper is wrong, and much like with the infamous Hockey Stick, spliced together data to draw an erroneous conclusion. But climate 'science' is heavily politicised, and the IPCC is meant to be an Intergovernmental panel of experts that should be trusted to tell the truth. Then again, so should the scientific journals, but many of those have their own biases.

              Theoretically, the government could convene a panel of experts, and we should be able to trust them. Yet these panels end up being like the Climate Change Committee and just an example of the way vested interests perform regulatory capture.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

                tl;dr: when science says like me, science is right, otherwise science is biased. I can't lose.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

                  There is a distinction between science and 'the science', similar to democracy vs 'our democracy'.

                2. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: "Fact-checkers will label AI-generated media for upcoming EU elections"

                  tl;dr: when science says like me, science is right, otherwise science is biased. I can't lose.

                  Science tends to be absolute. Gravity sucks, until we find a situation where it doesn't, in which case people will probably blame global warming. But climate 'science' is an example where things have become extremely politicised, and there have been frequent demands to censor 'disinformation'. But the disinformation in this case was promoted by PNAS, the IPCC, and of course the gullible MSM. A story that claimed to show increased storm damage has been falsified, and should be retracted, but it probably won't be and the damage is done. It's not a problem unique to climate 'science' though and the medical field also has much the same problems with dubious studies and manipulated data.

  4. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

    Will this be like the time they fact checked the Hunter Biden laptop story and deemed it to be Russian information despite it turning out to be entirely 100% factual?

    Expect this to benefit anybody pushing to enlarge the state and nobody else.

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Expect this to benefit anybody pushing to enlarge the state and nobody else.

      But.. but.. it's sustainable. It's also a bit of a circular firing squad with public money going to private 'fact checking' outfits, like "Fullfact". It's already a big business, and growing as governments impose more censorship legislation. I can't help thinking the money might be better spent on the education system to teach kids critical thinking and developing their own BS detectors.

      There's a neat example on Fullfact 'fact checking' energy price increases, especially linked to British Gas profits. It correctly seperates BG and Centrica, but kinda glosses over how energy companies use financial engineering to move profits around. BG made a modest profit, Centrica made a much, much larger one, all thanks to our misguided energy 'policy'. It also glosses over the big increase in standing charges, and why continuing policies like this is only going to make inflation and cost of living problems worse.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        No, inflation is our fault for spending too much. And the recession is also our fault for not spending enough.

      2. Casca Silver badge

        Oh look. Two trolls engaging...

        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

          Only you and the AC formally known as njp. Who once again displays his expertise in economics by ignoring the drivers for inflation, ie mostly energy policy. Although there is the amusing prospect of the Budget, and tobacco duties increasing the cost of electricity again in a few weeks.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            I'm not njp. And I was just repeating what 'experts' have reported in the news.

            Inflation is just transitory

            https://www.bbc.com/news/business-58098118

            Inflation is good

            https://edition.cnn.com/2021/12/01/economy/inflation-good-bad-winners-losers/index.html

            Inflation is your fault

            https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2023/12/inflation-prices-buying-habits/676191/

            1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              I'm not njp. And I was just repeating what 'experts' have reported in the news.

              Inflation is just transitory

              This is the problem with ACs. Make a psuedonym and it's a lot simpler to have a conversation rather than assuming you're just trolling.

              But currently, inflation is far from transitory. It's been policy for decades, ie a 2% inflation target. Making everything more expensive is great for massaging GDP and providing the illusion of growth. But it ignores the inevitability of compounding. Especially when other policies amplify this. So energy policy has long contracts with RPI+ formulas, so do PFI projects for schools & hospitals. Energy goes up, cost of everything goes up given energy is an input cost to practically everything. Then costs of running schools & hospitals goes up as well, as do their energy costs. Then because everything is getting more expensive, we have strikes and people demanding more wages because the cost of living has been inflated.

              And it gets even worse, which is why I keep mentioning tobacco. It's in the 'basket of goods' used to calculate inflation. Successive rounds of nanny-statism have increased the cost to around £35 for 50g so now a single item is enough to shift the totall cost of that basket of goods. So electricity and payments for schools and hospitals get more expensive because of the price of tobacco. This makes no economic sense, but rather than cutting tobacco duty and causing an immediate drop in inflation, government will probably just take it out of the basket.

              But there's other stuff having much the same effect. Like the price of bog roll. Why has a simple, basic product got so expensive? Or, why have rolls shrunk? But that's also true of many products, but if shrinkflation was included in RPI, inflation would probably be running at more like 20%

              And then because the cost of living has rocketed, people have stopped spending because they need to pay for the basics like electricity and bog rolls. So then we have that especially fun economic effect of stagflation. Solution is pretty simple, namely government needs to focus on cutting costs, but that's much harder than allowing inflation to spiral out of control. They get inflation busting pay rises, so why would they care?

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Fighting Dunning Kruger is hard

                Keeping a 2% inflation rate objective is sufficient to keep the economy going in a stable and predictable way. It gives everybody visibility, especially for long term plans (debt, investment, retirement, bonds...). It also makes sure that there is enough headroom to avoid deflation in case of temporary recession episodes. You're welcome.

                1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: Fighting Dunning Kruger is hard

                  Keeping a 2% inflation rate objective is sufficient to keep the economy going in a stable and predictable way.

                  Not really, unless you mean the predictability of policy efffects on inflation. Or maybe I'm just bitter having worked in an industry where the normal rules don't apply. So Internet/Telecoms people expect to get more for less. In your food basket, you expect to pay more and get less. I doubt people cheer when they discover their bills and shopping gets ever more expensive and praise the government for stability. Instead, they spend less, so stagflation again. But the problem is more policy related.

                  So consider the chicken and the egg. Chickens are birds of little brain, much like politcians. Food in, eggs out. Politicians, food in, nothing of any economic value out. But chickens don't care about covid lockdowns, or Russia. Egg production's pretty constant as long as they're fed. But they need heating, energy for processing, feed, and eggs transported to market. Policies have made energy 3x more expensive, which also impacts on feed prices, as do other policies like banning fertiliser. So eggs get more expensive, because policies have made energy more expensive.

                  Or consider bog roll. Maybe you have a factory that produces 10k rolls a day. Demand probably didn't decrease due to covid because people still gotta poop. AFAIK there's no correlation between work location and frequency of bowel movements. If anything, you might have made more money flogging 'luxury' retail packs instead of industrial. Plus people panic buying is a pricing signal that people don't really want to go back to using dop sticks, despite all the things the Romans did for us. But you know how much energy you need to feed the machine to produce 10k rolls, and if that's 3x more expensive, you have to put prices up. Plus I guess bulky & light stuff like bog roll is more sensitive to transport costs as well.

                  And then say, chocolate. Much the same deal, yet chocolate has been very prone to both inflation and shrinkflation. Luckily we also have food regulations specifiying minimum cocoa content, otherwise we'd be buying late bars and late eggs.

                  So shopper, ie ONS chucks those in their basket that maybe comes to £20. It's inflated by maybe 5% since last year, mostly due to energy prices and policies. Then you add 50g of tobacco and it's now £55. You've more than doubled the cost of your basket by adding a single item. Of course now that inflated basket sets the price for the next increase in CfDs, and every other indexed contract, and everything gets more expensive, inflation continues to spiral, and the cost of living crisis continues.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    ∑ rant != theory

                    You should publish economy scientific papers. You have all the material: the eggs, the chocolate and ... the bog rolls. And your explanations are limpid.

                    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                      Re: ∑ rant != theory

                      You should publish economy scientific papers

                      No real need. The effects of energy policy and compounding on inflation should be obvious, even to you.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            lol

            Oh, now JE is an expert in economics. Keep something for April 1st, man!

            > ignoring the drivers for inflation, ie mostly energy policy.

            What about post-covid money supply compared to availability of goods and services? Jay Powell should ask you for consulting. You seem to know so much.

            > Only you and the AC formally known as njp.

            What does njp stand for? Non-Jelliedeel-Partisan?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Never mention the "Hunter Biden laptop" without mentioning also Hillary's email, the magic QAnon number 17 and the fact that you can heal COVID with exposition to UV and tea-spoons of ivermectin,

      1. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

        The Hunter Biden laptop story was true. That's not even debated anymore. Go and read about it, you'll be shocked and appalled.

        From Time magazine:

        "In the suit, Hunter Biden says the computer repair shop owner didn't have a legal right to copy data from Biden's laptop and pass it to others."

        Not that it wasn't his. But that the repair shop owner didn't have the right to show people the evidence of bribery.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          > The Hunter Biden laptop story was true. That's not even debated anymore. Go and read about it

          Of course. And the election was stolen. Everybody knows that (in the MAGA cult). Why don't you guys get your own parallel universe?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Now I distinctly remember something about the 2016 election being stolen and lots of people complaining about that.

          2. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge
            Facepalm

            Like most people, I'm not even American.

            Are you trolling or are you a true believer?

            Faith will only get you so far. Perhaps go and read. Plenty of "mainstream" outlets have accepted that the "Russian disinformation" claim was a lie. You can even find out who was responsible for it if you can be bothered to read.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              FBI Informant used by GOP to impeach POTUS was recycling Russian disinformation

              LEGAL DOCUMENT:

              UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff, v. ALEXANDER SMIRNOV, Defendant.

              When he was interviewed by FBI agents in September 2023, Smirnov repeated some of his false claims, changed his story as to other of his claims, and promoted a new false narrative after he said he met with Russian officials.

              During his custodial interview on February 14, Smirnov admitted that officials associated with Russian intelligence were involved in passing a story about Businessperson 1.

              While Smirnov has no ties to the community in Las Vegas, what he does have is extensive foreign ties, including, most troublingly and by his own account, contact with foreign intelligence services, including Russian intelligence agencies, and has had such contacts recently.

              Of particular note, Smirnov has reported numerous contacts with Russian Official 1, who has been described by Smirnov in a number of ways, including as the son of a former high-ranking Russian government official, someone who purportedly controls two groups of individuals tasked with carrying out assassination efforts in a third-party country, a Russian representative to another country, and as someone with ties to a particular Russian intelligence service.

              During this same trip, Smirnov apparently attended a separate meeting with Russian Official 1, the individual who controls groups that are engaged in overseas assassination efforts. During this meeting with Russian Official 1, Russian Official 1 claimed that another individual, Russian Official 4, the head of a particular unit of a Russian Intelligence Service, ran an intelligence operation at a “club” located at a particular hotel. Smirnov told the FBI Handler that the Russian Intelligence Service intercepted cell phone calls made by guests at the hotel. The Russian Intelligence Service intercepted several calls placed by prominent U.S. persons the Russian government may use as “kompromat” in the 2024 election, depending on who the candidates will be.

              etc, etc.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          LOL

          Hunter Biden laptop... New York Post, Rudy Giuliani and a bling guy. Riiiight. Who do you expect to believe this, apart from MAGA knuckle draggers?

  5. xyz Silver badge

    Poacher turned gamekeeper? Or...

    Standard scam strategy... Create a problem and then come up with a solution to get rid of it.

    1. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

      Re: Poacher turned gamekeeper? Or...

      It's not even that.

      It's creating a moat. If you want to compete with Facebook, you have to provide "fact checking" that is amenable to the every expanding state.

      The intention is to price startups out of the market. And if they can get Twitter banned for not blocking right wing voices then that's even "better".

      Huge companies want regulation - they can afford to comply. Their future potential competitors can't.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Inspect and... ?

    Oh yes, do zilch. Any interruption of normal service of slinging ads at punters means less $$$$$ for Zuck and he won't like that one bit.

    Revenue wins over user gullibility every day that ends in a 'y'.

    Not a ZuckFartBook user. As far as my family goes, FB is a lost cause just like Twitter.

    Seems to be a pattern here...

  7. munnoch Bronze badge

    attaching an "altered" label

    ... which will cause such medias to be treated as less relevant, so it appears lower down on people's feeds

    Pick your definition of altered, but isn't the correct response to disallow made-up content masquerading as factual?

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