“Moving forward, we will restrict ad serving on pages that misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information about the publisher, the publisher’s content, or the primary purpose of the web property” – Google spokesman
The scourge of fake news websites may soon be a thing of the past as the mighty Google has announced that it intends to cut off any such sites from its ad revenue networks.
Most of these sites use social media platforms such as Facebook to spread hoax news that has the potential to go viral. As the dimmer among us gave into curiosity and the posts gathered hits, the hoaxers counted their cash. Now, though, Google plans to put an end to this. For good.
This comes after the US elections where there were numerous reports that voter behavior was influenced by fake news pieces appearing across the web. Facebook, too, came in for its fair share of criticism over “influencing the elections”, a notion that Mark Zuckerberg dismissed as “crazy”.
The AdSense program of Google already doesn’t work with sites that promote violence, hate speech, and pornography. Talking to Reuters, a Google spokesperson, while confirming that the new policy involves fake news sites stated, “Moving forward, we will restrict ad serving on pages that misrepresent, misstate, or conceal information about the publisher, the publisher’s content, or the primary purpose of the web property.”
It will be a major setback to those websites that have tapped into Google’s search algorithms and draw up articles accordingly, enabling them to appear at the top in related search results.
Google’s decision could not have come sooner; in an age of high-speed transmission with fewer editorial filters, protecting the already diminished credibility of the news business remains imperative.