Posted on June 18, 2019

Berkeley, Cornell Partner with Facebook to Identify ‘Fake News’

Eduardo Neret, Campus Reform, June 17, 2019

Facebook is partnering with the University of California-Berkeley, Cornell University, and the University of Maryland to identify fake news.

The tech giant is investing $7.5 million into projects at the three schools, according to a UC Berkeley news release. The two Berkeley professors who will work with Facebook are Hany Farid and Alexe Efros, who are both part of UC-Berkeley’s Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences.


Farid has been a longtime critic of social media companies and the danger that doctored videos and images pose online. The professor has commented on this subject for CNN and admitted to the school that he is “skeptical” of the new partnership with Facebook.


Farid added that his work will involve creating technology to detect “fake news, fake images, and fake videos.”

Campus Reform reached out to Farid with questions about how such a technology could detect fake news without political bias, but received no response in time for publication.

{snip} The Berkeley College Republicans told Campus Reform that while well-intentioned, this effort could lead to censorship of conservative content.

“The underlying premise of Facebook’s repeated crusades to eliminate misinformation and fake content is the belief that Americans are exceedingly gullible and need benevolent overlords to protect them from consuming the wrong information,” Berkeley College Republicans External VP Rudra Reddy told Campus Reform.