Facebook’s new commitments on climate misinformation fall short

  • Facebook has announced new efforts to combat climate crisis misinformation on its platform, however, climate advocates have claimed these efforts fall short.
  • Efforts announced include expanding its climate science centre, investing in organisations that fight misinformation, and launching a video series with young climate advocates on Facebook and Instagram.
  • Critics have expressed scepticism as vast amounts of climate misinformation seem to slip through.
  • This was confirmed by climate denial watchdog group InfluenceMap in 2020 when dozens of climate crisis denying ads were viewed more than 8 million times after avoiding Facebook’s filters.
  • Mark Zuckerberg was sent a letter in the past written by 13 environmental groups asking for a higher commitment in monitoring climate misinformation and for more transparency about the scale of the problem on Facebook.
  • Full story, here.

Social media platforms increasingly prominent in radicalisation

  • A study by Nottingham Trent University (NTU) and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) has been published in a report by the Ministry of Justice.
  • The research involved analysing over 230 detailed post-conviction assessments to investigate offline and online activities in the build-up to the offence, risk levels and characteristics of the offender and the case.
  • Findings since 2005 showed that the proportion of offenders radicalised online has increased and the number of those primarily radicalised offline has decreased proportionally.
  • Those primarily radicalised offline were found to have the highest levels of capability to commit future extremist offences likely to cause serious or significant harm.
  • The types of websites, platforms and applications used by those who are convicted of extremist offences were found to have changed, moving away from specific extremist websites and towards the use of open social media platforms.
  • The researchers hope that these findings can contribute to efforts in profiling of online and offline pathways into radicalisation and to more effective offender assessment.
  • Full story, here.

Cameo Calls let you have a video meet-and-greet with a celebrity

  • Cameo, the celebrity pre-recorded message platform, is adding a new feature for live video calls called Cameo Calls.
  • Previously, Cameo allowed users to pay for a personalised video message from celebrities and content creators on the app.
  • The new feature allows users to purchase a one-to-one video call designed to resemble meet-and-greets.
  • The Cameo Calls page will have a full list of celebrities available for video chat and price lists, these can last up to 15 minutes and the average price is around $31.
  • This follows Cameo Live released in June 2020 where a group of up to 4 people could talk to a celebrity on a Zoom call.
  • Full story, here.

Letter threatening schools with legal action over COVID-19 vaccines

  • Anti-vax groups are circulating a letter threatening headteachers with legal action if children are given COVID-19 vaccines without parental consent.
  • These letters were sent out by Lawyers for Liberty at the request of anti-vax parents.
  • This follows the release of plans for a COVID-19 vaccine rollout for 12-to-15-year-olds across the UK and the government announcement that teenagers will be able to overrule parental consent to receive the vaccine.
  • If their parents/guardians don’t give consent in the event where a child wants to be vaccinated, a doctor or nurse will intervene to advocate for the child’s wishes.
  • If consent is still not given following this, young people can elect to receive to the vaccine without parental permission.
  • Meanwhile, anti-vax groups are continuing to plan meetups around schools to target young people and continue efforts urging other parents to circulate the letters across schools.
  • Full story, here.