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Facebook will remove false claims related to Oregon wildfires

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on September 14, 2020 Published on September 14, 2020

This is consistent with our past efforts to remove content that could lead to imminent harm, said the company   -  REUTERS

Social media has been flooded with misinformation about the wild fires in Oregon

Facebook will remove false claims stating that the Oregon wildfires were started by certain groups.

Facebook’s policy communications director Andy Stone took to Twitter on Sunday to announce this decision.

“We are removing false claims that the wildfires in Oregon were started by certain groups. This is based on confirmation from law enforcement that these rumours are forcing local fire and police agencies to divert resources from fighting the fires and protecting the public,” Stone tweeted.

“This is consistent with our past efforts to remove content that could lead to imminent harm given the possible risk to human life as the fires rage on,” he added.

Social media has been flooded with misinformation related to the Oregon wildfires which have caused massive damage to the region with many linking it to Qanon conspiracy theories and the Antifa movement. This has led to authorities diverting resources from fighting the fires.

“Reports that extremists are setting wildfires in Oregon are untrue. Help us stop the spread of misinformation by only sharing information from trusted, official sources,” FBI Portland said in a tweet.

“Conspiracy theories and misinformation take valuable resources away from local fire and police agencies working around the clock to bring these fires under control,” FBI special agent in charge Loren Cannon said in a statement.

At least eight people have been reported dead with the wildfires which started in August burning over 875,000 acres across the state, CNN reported.

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Published on September 14, 2020
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