Facebook is all set to roll out its new feature inside user-run Facebook groups. The social network giant states that the new feature is designed to help real experts stand out in discussions about their field of expertise. The group admins will have the power to give this title to literally any member of the group. Groups who promote conspiracy theories will also be able to designate “experts”.
Facebook, a large social media platform where aged people are also seen using it; the platform and the groups formed on this very platform have been used by movements such as QAnon, anti-vaccination groups, and by political factions which spread misinformation.
Earlier this year, Facebook changed its policies to remove groups that discourage people from getting vaccines and also stopped recommending political groups to new members.
Facebook said groups were subject to its community standards – and that people who had received more than three “strikes” for violating those standards in the past 90 days, would not be eligible to be marked as “experts”.
A Facebook spokesperson later said the function was a “limited test” despite the announcement suggesting it would be available to all.
Facebook said the new feature is a way to promote genuinely knowledgeable voices within groups.
“Admins now have the ability to select specific members in their communities who stand out, empowering them to play a more meaningful role,” Facebook executive Maria Smith wrote in a blog post.
“Admins can collaborate with group experts to host Q&As, share perspectives on a topic and respond to questions,” she added.
The people selected will have a choice of whether to accept or decline the expert invitation. If they accept, they will get a badge next to their name.
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The company said that among the active groups currently running on Facebook, there are about 70 million administrators and moderators.
As part of the rollout, Facebook said it is also experimenting with ways to let group admins find true experts on a topic to invite to their groups.