Updated at 12:30 p.m. ET on February 2, 2019
Snopes has pulled out of its fact-checking partnership with Facebook. The storied myth-debunking site was one of dozens of groups the social network enlisted to help combat misinformation after the 2016 election. According to Snopes, Facebook paid it $100,000 in 2017 for this work.
Snopes is not the only fact-checking group that has not yet reupped for this year either. Lauren Easton, a spokesperson for the Associated Press, confirmed to The Atlantic that the “AP is not currently doing fact-checking work for Facebook.” However, she said, “AP is in talks with Facebook, and we fully expect to be doing fact-check work for Facebook in 2019.”
As of Friday afternoon, Facebook included 51 fact-checking affiliates (including Snopes) in what was an outdated list on its website. Many are AFP affiliates, however, which reduces the number of unique organizations working with Facebook. A Facebook spokesperson told me there are now 34 partners in the program.
The note the Snopes team posted announcing the end of the partnership was circumspect about why the organization had pulled out, explicitly leaving open the possibility of working with Facebook again: “At this time we are evaluating the ramifications and costs of providing third-party fact-checking services, and we want to determine with certainty that our efforts to aid any particular platform are a net positive for our online community, publication, and staff,” the note says. “To be clear, we have not ruled out working with Facebook or any other platforms in the future.”