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Millions watch protests on Facebook but the footage was from 2018

When it comes to Facebook and the mishandling of your data over the years, it’s gotten to the point that it’s hard to imagine that situation will ever improve. Despite not protecting users’ privacy at all, billions of people around the globe still visit the site monthly.

That’s why if you decide to stick with the site you at least need to take matters into your own hands and beef up security by changing some settings. Tap or click here for privacy and security settings you need to change right now.

Privacy issues are just the beginning when it comes to Facebook problems. For years the social media giant also has had a major problem with the spreading of fake news. And now, the problem is impacting people trying to get real-time details about protests that have been happening all over the U.S.

Facebook Live betrays users

As protests took place across the U.S. over the death of George Floyd this past week, millions watched events unfold on Facebook Live. But, there is one major problem: Some of the footage was from 2018.

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The Wall Street Journal reports that a Facebook Live video supposedly showing real-time footage of police officers kneeling on the back of a black man’s head wasn’t live at all. It was taken at an arrest two years ago. There was also a post accompanying the video that read, “They want a peaceful protest in Minneapolis but the police are cowards in Minnesota PERIOD!!!” Talk about inciting anger!

But, why would anyone want to stir up more anger than what’s already naturally occurring? It turns out many of the fake posts are coming from bad actors outside of the U.S. Live protest streams spreading misleading or inflammatory information came from pages operated out of Pakistan and other foreign countries and received as many as 20 million views before Facebook stepped in and took them down. The fake live video in question had 1.6 million views and who knows how many times it was shared.

Sadly, the most popular of these types of posts received more traffic than the most-watched videos from CNN or Fox News that were also posted on Facebook. This spam-like material violates some of Facebook’s rules and needs to be removed.

How to report fake Facebook Live videos

Facebook has failed miserably for years to get a handle on these types of posts, so it’s up to you. In today’s charged environment, it’s more important than ever to check your sources before reacting or sharing them.

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If you see a video on Facebook that you believe is fake or violates the site’s rules, you can report it so it’s taken down. Here are the steps to report a video:

  • Click the three dots found in the top right of the live video.
  • Click Report video.
  • Select the option that best describes the issue and follow the on-screen instructions.
  • Click Next, then click Done.

That’s it, the video has now been reported and Facebook employees will review it (hopefully sooner rather than later) to see if it actually violates the rules. If it does, it will be taken down ASAP.

Keep in mind, when you report a live video, the video creator won’t see who reported them. So you don’t have to worry about retaliation of any kind.

We all need to do our part to fight the scourge of fake news and videos that have been spreading on social media. Another way to help is never to share a post without checking on its validity.. Let’s face it, we’re living in strange times and we all need to do our part to help improve the situation.

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