Facebook has confirmed that it has started the rating of some of its members on the reliability of the scale.
The Washington Post has revealed that the social network has put in place the system over the last year.
The technology company, said it has been developed to help manage the reporting of false information on his platform, but he refused to disclose how the score is calculated or the limitations of its use.
The critics fear that the users have seemingly no way to get their rating.
The BBC understands that at the present time that Facebook is the misinformation of the team of the use of the measure.
The tech company has, however, opposed to the tool to be described as an evaluation of the reputation.
“The idea that we have a centralized system of “reputation” score for people who use Facebook is simply false, and the headline in the Washington Post is misleading,” said a spokesman.
“What we are doing: We have developed a process to protect against people indiscriminately tracking the new fake and try to outwit the system.
“The reason we do this is to ensure that our fight against the misinformation is as effective as possible.”Fact-checking
The Washington Post’s report is based on an interview with Facebook executive Tessa Lyons on the platform of the struggle against the “false news”.
She said that she said that it had been developed to improve verification scheme started in 2016, in which the messages that Facebook allows users to flag it as false are sent to third-party organisations to decide if they appear lower in people’s news feeds.
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To make the system more effective, she explained that her team wanted to know which markers were themselves worthy of trust.
“People often say things that they disagree with,” Ms. Lyons explained, adding that the system gave users a score between zero and one.
The BBC understands that it is calculated in part by the correlation of the false news reports, with the ultimate decisions of the independent fact-checkers.
Therefore, someone who has made a single complaint, gets a higher score than someone who makes a lot of complaints, only some of which are determined to be justified.
But the Washington Post, said Mrs. Lyon refused to say what other signals have been used to avoid tipping of bad actors on the way to outwit the system.Automated and opaque’
Facebook is far from being the first technology company in the private score of its users.
Uber has long rated of its customers according to the brand of each driver. But originally it required clients to e-mail requests to their account before you decide to make the information available through its application.
Twitter co-founder Ev Williams said in 2010 that he had given the users a secret “reputation score” to help you to recommend members to follow.
The Chinese state is also piloting a system in which the citizens are a “social credit” score, which is based on a mix of their online and offline behavior.
But one expert said that Facebook is the use of an automated “and opaque” system of rating raised particular concerns.
“It is not surprising that Facebook wants to evaluate the credibility of its users, given the way some of them are highly suspicious, gullible or deliberately misinform others,” said Dr Bernie Hogan, of the Oxford Internet Institute.
“But consider the analogy of a credit score.
“You can check your credit score for free in many countries – in contrast, Facebook the trust is unregulated and we have no way to know what our score is, or how to challenge it.
“Facebook is not a neutral player, and in spite of all diplomatic documents to the press, on the contrary, it is the intention of the management of a population in a profit.”
The civil rights activists were also critical.
“This is yet another example of Facebook using data in a way that they do not expect their data to be used, which undermines people’s trust in Facebook”, said Ailidh Callander, a lawyer with privacy International.
“Facebook must simply learn some hard lessons, and begin to be transparent and accountable on how they use the profile data and make decisions.”
It is not clear if the scoring system is applied to citizens of the EU.
But Facebook must comply with the recent introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
“Under new data protection laws, organisations providing services to people in the united KINGDOM and the european UNION must be transparent with customers about how personal information is used and what is held on them,” said a spokesman for the united KINGDOM, the office of the Information Commissioner.
“This would include the way in which the data are processed behind the scenes, the way they are presented and the way the algorithms work to drive that treatment.”